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After losing to Ryerson a few days before, the McMaster Marauders came out on Saturday, Nov. 14, bent on making sure the outcome was different against Toronto.

The Marauders built a healthy 26-13 lead in the first quarter and never allowed Toronto to score more than 18 points in a quarter. Mac won 89-64 and lifted their overall record back to .500 at 2-2.

McMaster forced Toronto into 24 turnovers and scored 28 points off of them, also pulling in an impressive 19 steals, 13 of which came courtesy of guards Aaron Redpath (three), and Trevon McNeil and David McCulloch who contributed five apiece. The need for tough defense to force turnovers and lead to points is exactly what Marauder Assistant Coach Seth Wearing called for last week.

“We need to use our length and our athleticism,” said Wearing. “We need to turn people over and get easy scores. It has to start with our defense and our ability to turn people over.”

Toronto’s 18-point third quarter was the only blemish against the McMaster coaching staff’s benchmark of 17-point defensive quarters. The only game in which McMaster has held a team to 17 or fewer points in each quarter for the whole game was at Algoma on Nov. 7.

“We want to be able to hold our opponents to under 17 every quarter,” said Wearing. “Our goal is to limit teams to 17-point quarters and we want to score 24 or more each quarter. If that works out we should win by 30 and dictate the whole time.”

McMaster beat Toronto by 25 and mostly satisfied Wearing’s offensive and defensive benchmark. If McMaster does meet those standards, they definitely should be dictating the games they play.

On the glass, forward Troy Joseph grabbed a monstrous 16 boards (five offensive, 11 defensive) to go with his 13 points, completing his first double-double of the season. Joseph’s strong rebounding accounted for a striking 35 per cent of McMaster’s total output of 47 rebounds. Of those 47, 19 rebounds came on the offensive glass, which gave McMaster extra possessions. McMaster took advantage of those extra possessions and turned them into 18 second-chance points.

Fourth-year swingman Leon Alexander had his best scoring performance of the young season, dropping 26 points on a stellar 11-for-18 shooting from the field, while adding six rebounds and five assists in 31 minutes of play.Fourth-year guard Lazar Kojovic came off the bench and had an incredibly efficient game scoring 14 points in 14 minutes on 5-7 shooting (4-5 from three-point range).

The CIS No. 9-ranked McMaster hits the road this weekend with a Nov. 20 matchup at Queen’s and a Nov. 21 date at York. Both games tip off at 8 p.m.

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