In their home opener for the 2000/2001 season, the University of Calgary men's basketball team fell to the Brandon University Bobcats 90-84 and 90-88. Both games were extremely close and the Dinos made a jubilant effort to show off their new team and new coach, Dan Vanhooren. However the Bobcats, last year's Canadian Intercollegiate Athletic Union finalists, proved to be too much for the hosts. Both teams played good games with Brandon coming out on top each time.
Calgary made many late rushes in both games, but just could not catch their rivals. Friday's game was 87-84 for Brandon with just 30 seconds remaining, but the Dinos could not pull off the comeback. John Riad's attempt to tie the game failed and the Dinos dropped their first game of the year.
Saturday's game was just as close but the Dinos just couldn't defeat their opponents.
Starters John Riad, Whit Horns-berger, Chris Harris, Andy Stordeur and Jeff Loomis showed that they still have their skills from last year and will hopefully improve over the course of the season.
Both first-year Dinos, Sean Paterson and Hornsberger, stepped up to the playing level of CIAU basketball and took the necessary risks to prove themselves to their fans, their coach and their teammates. There was a verbal disagreement after the game on Saturday but Paterson showed a lot of confidence and maturity in breaking up the would-be fight.
Both Calgary, and next week's challengers the University of British Columbia, have new coaches this season and both previously coached college basketball. Calgary coach Vanhooren. coached at Medicine Hat College prior to being named Dinos' Head Coach in May.
The Dinos will play UBC Saturday and Sunday at 8:30 p.m. at the Jack Simpson Gymnasium.
The men's games will be a rematch of last year's conference quarterfinal series that saw UBC defeat Calgary 64-63 in the final game of the best of three series. The new team will do very well this year if they can step up their confidence, and this will come with winning more games. Canada West is not an easy conference, but the Dinos have the talent to take them to the top.
The basketball Dinos have a long road ahead and their year may turn out to be very prosperous. New coaching and new players provide new direction which will determine the Dinos' fortune in 2000/2001. This team has the talent to win, lets hope they use it well.