An Extreme Cold warning saw temperatures outside dip to -40 C, but the Rattlers hoped to heat things up inside and defeat the Briercrest Clippers. The Game opened with a deep three from Aaron Cameron followed up by another 3 on the next possession. The clippers came back down to score a deep two. Another Rattler 3 and a steal for a breakaway 2 saw Medicine Hat up 11-2 less than 2 minutes in. The Rattlers were the better team early coming out fast before taking their foot off the gas. This allowed the Clippers to chip away at the lead. Seeing their opposition trying to claw back into the game, the rattlers again turned on their offence in an attempt to further distance themselves on the board. They did this with the help of strong play from guard Jon Sappleton who lead by example taking the ball to the rim often and converting. The Rattlers lead by 20 at the break, up 32-12.
The second quarter started much like the first, the Rattlers came out hard and fast not allowing the less talented clippers any chance at getting back in the game. It almost seemed that the Rattlers wanted to end the game early. A huge swat from Osato Obaseki on back to back plays saw the capacity crowd erupt with noise. Medicine Hat started to slow down the play on offence with a comfortable lead, aiming to take time off the clock. Briercrest adjusted their lineup, putting in 2 posts with 3 guards, looking for a mismatch down low. The Rattlers seemed to be relaxed on the defensive end, not challenging shots and allowing the Clippers a few deep threes. A jersey Grab and some pushing and shoving saw both teams with fouls and the referee issuing a warning about rough play. The Rattlers continued to pad their lead, making a Clippers comeback less and less likely. The Rattlers Ended the half with a 51-26 lead.
The third started with a quick Rattlers bucket. After the Clippers came down the floor quickly to score and match the score in the half, Medicine Hat took a timeout to settle a team coming out of the gate flat. The Rattlers still seemed flat missing plays and open passes. A full line change from the Rattlers bench saw a much smaller lineup in the game. This smaller quicker lineup started to click and apply pressure on the defensive end. The bench brought the intensity of the team back up as they started to find their groove again. Up 32 at the midpoint in the quarter, Medicine Hat did not stop playing with the game firmly in hand. Briercrest was fighting with all they had pressing and playing tough defense. The Clippers offensive presence was the biggest part missing from their game. Shots were missing and contested on every shot. The quarter ended with the Rattlers still leading big, 68-39.
The 4th quarter felt like a formality at this point. With the Rattlers up by 30 and only 10 minutes for the Clippers to close the gap, a comeback was not in the stars. Neither team gave up much in the way of free points. Every shot and pass was contested with noting coming easy for either team. The Rattlers were just a bigger more skilled team at the end of the day and the Clippers simply could not compete with Medicine Hat. The Rattlers were simply too much, coming out on top with a score of 83-51.
The ACAC Players of the game were Kyle Helsloot and Jon Sappleton