Residence Charity Face-Off raises $16,000 for IWK

Dalhousie residence students competed in the eighth annual Residence Charity Face-Off at the Halifax Forum.

By Graeme Benjamin

The Big Horns celebrate after winning the Munro Cup (Graeme Benjamin photo)

Dalhousie residence students competed in the eighth annual Residence Charity Face-Off March 9 at the Halifax Forum, raising $16,000 for the IWK Health Centre Foundation.

For the first time in three years, the Big Horns, representing Risley, Eliza Ritchie, Glengary and Shirreff Halls walked away with the Munro Cup, winning 7-6 in a shootout over the Trojans.

Dalhousie residences have fundraised more than $128,000 for the IWK since 2008.

Joanna Hamilton, Manager of Annual Giving of the IWK Foundation, says the money raised goes to the specialized care fund. That helps pay for priority equipment and research.

“We are absolutely thrilled,” she says. “It’s only because of donors like Dalhousie who are fundraising for us all throughout the year that we are able to fund world class specialized care to Maritime woman, children, youth and families.”

Big Horns players celebrate after Haiden Goltz's overtime winner (Graeme Benjamin photo)

The Face-Off isn’t the only event at Dalhousie that raises money for the foundation. Dean Martin, the Residence Life Manager of Howe Hall, says there are several other fundraisers held within Howe and other residences.

“There’s a Casino Night being organized by the Big Horns and we’re hoping here in Howe Hall to have either a spaghetti dinner or pancake breakfast to raise funds,” he says.

The game was high scoring and action packed. The Trojans, made of students from Howe, Gerard, O’Brien and Mini Rez jumped out to an early two goal lead in the first. The Big Horns clawed their way back, scoring four unanswered to take a 4-2 lead heading into the third period.

The teams went back and forth in the third, netting two goals apiece in the first ten minutes. The Trojans nearly completed their comeback, tying the game at six and sending it into overtime.

Extra time solved nothing, forcing the first ever Face-Off shootout. The Trojans couldn’t get anything past Big Horns goaltender David Taylor and Haiden Goltz put in the game winner for the Big Horns.

The third period kept Trojans fans on their feet (Graeme Benjamin photo)

Martin says he was upset the Trojans lost, but in the end the game’s result doesn’t really matter.

“Obviously I wanted the Trojans to win,” he says. “But I think when it comes down to it everyone wins because the funds are going to a really good cause.”

Traditionally, the annual game has a spirited atmosphere, with Trojans and Big Horns fans sitting on opposite sides of the ice. Connor McPhail, a Trojan fan, was at the Face-Off for the first time. He says it wasn’t what he expected at all.

“Both sides of the stands were packed,” he says. “I know all my friends bought tickets and I know a few Big Horns fans that were going but I didn’t think it would be as full as it was.”

Martin says it’s likely the game will be held again next year.

“I know I and the IWK would be delighted if the event were to continue next year,” says Hamilton.

To donate to the IWK Foundation, visit

Dean Martin on the Residence Charity Face-Off

Dean Martin on the Residence Charity Face-Off





Young Tigers squad fall in AUS basketball playoffs

The Dalhousie men’s basketball team failed to win an AUS championship, or even reach the semifinals for the second year in a row.

By Graeme Benjamin

Dal head coach John Campbell argues a call during the Tigers 78-70 win over the Axemen. (Graeme Benjamin photo)

The Dalhousie men’s basketball team failed to win an AUS championship, or even reach the semifinals for the second year in a row.

The fifth-seeded St. Francis Xavier X-Men defeated the fourth-seeded Dalhousie Tigers 78-70 in the quarter-final at the Halifax Metro Centre March 1. Jeremy Dunn and Tyrell Vernon led the charge for St. FX with 17 points each, while Dal’s Hassan Abdullahi’s 20 points made him the game’s highest scorer.

Dal entered the fourth quarter down 14 points. Led by Abdullahi and Kashrell Lawerence, the Tigers went on a 15-2 run, placing them within one with less than five minutes to play. Dunn then made two clutch buckets beyond the arc, putting the X-Men up seven and sealing the Tigers’ fate.

Dal head coach John Campbell had mixed emotions at the end of the game, but overall was pleased with his team’s performance.

“We dug ourselves into a pretty big hole but I’m proud of the guys for coming back in the fourth quarter,” he said, “But you can’t expect to win against good teams when you’re that inconsistent.”

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Steve Konchalski, the 38-year veteran coach of St. FX, complimented the Tigers on their late game push. He said the second half has always been difficult for his squad because his team lacks depth.

“We’ve led all good teams in the league by double digits in the second half but because our team doesn’t have a deep bench, the other teams wear us down,” said Konchalski.

With the win, the X-Men advanced to the semifinals against the first-ranked Cape Breton Capers. CBU won the game 80-70.

Tigers’ Season

The Tigers had a late season surge that saw them win five of their last six regular season games. Foreshadowing the championship game, they lost only to St. FX. In their last regular season match, they beat the Acadia Axemen 78-70. The Axemen, at the time, were ranked fourth in Canada.

The Dalhousie squad fell victim to the injury bug in the later part of the season. Devon Stedman had an ongoing knee injury and point guard Derek Norris broke his hand in January. Campbell said these obstaces were difficult to deal with entering the tournament.

“Stedman has a 50-year-old knee on a 20-year-old body,” says Campbell. “Derek’s injury caused us a lot of challenges with depth but I think Matt Morrison did an excellent job in his place.”

Konchalski believes it was the inexperience of the Tigers, and not their coaching, which led to their downfall.

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“At the beginning of the year I don’t think too many people assured them of a playoff spot necessarily,” he says. “But Campbell made them one of the best offensive rebounding teams in the league.”

The Saint Mary’s Huskies provided the upset of the tournament, defeating the third-seeded UPEI Panthers 77-76. The match came down to the final seconds and after a controversial travelling call on UPEI, the Huskies came out with the win.

CBU hoists the AUS Championship Trophy after beating the Acadia Axemen 83-75 (Graeme Benjamin photo)

The Finals

The Capers and the Acadia Axemen battled it out in the final. CBU finished their regular season with a 19-1 record, losing only to Acadia.

Cape Breton was on the winning end of the 83-75 final score. James Dorsey was named Player of the Game, scoring 30 points and going 16-16 on the foul line.

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As the final buzzer sounded, Capers head coach Matt Skinn dropped to his knees and fist-pumped the air in celebration.

“I’m an alumni of the program so to not do it as a player and to be able to bring it home as a coach is really special,” says Skinn.

The Capers and the Axemen will both compete in the CIS championships in Ottawa beginning March 8 at Carleton University. Cape Breton enters the tournament ranked second and takes on Lakehead University in their quarterfinal match. The Axemen are seeded fifth and will face UBC in their opening game.