Memories of go-go dancers and OT

SCOTT UNGER -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:30 AM ET

Standing in the home of the University of Winnipeg Wesmen yesterday, former Brandon University Bobcats men's basketball head coach Jerry Hemmings recalled a tale from yesteryear when some of the brass at the downtown school used an unorthodox gameplan against Hemmings' rival Bobcats.

To set the scene, in the 1979-80 season Brandon was ranked No. 1 in the nation, while the Wesmen were No. 2.

"The coach (of the Wesmen) then was Bruce Enns and the Aubrey Ferris was the athletic director," the legendary coach explained after it was announced that he will be inducted into the Manitoba Basketball Hall of Fame this October.

"They came in that afternoon and put really tight nets on the baskets because we were a transition, fast team. So every time anybody made a shot, the referee would have to have someone jump up there and knock the ball down before we could put it in play."

But that's only the half of it.

"At half time," Hemmings continued, "all of the sudden Bruce Enns came to me and said, 'Jerry, we've got some entertainment here tonight and they're running late.' We've already had our talk, we were ready to play.

"They brought in six go-go dancers to dance. Instead of dancing to the fans, they put them in front of our bench and they danced to our players.

"We were down by three or four at the half and won maybe by 10, so that was good motivation on their part."

Hemmings also recalled another game from the 1979-80 season yesterday that he didn't think would ever end.

"One game that really sticks out, and it doesn't even come down to a championship, was a league game against Lakehead University," he said.

"We beat them in five overtimes. When you think of the shot clock today, that's a record that I think will probably be hard pressed to be broken. The regulation score was 72-72 and we ended up winning 125-111. Sixty-five minutes of basketball, people got their money's worth that night."


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