The Queen’s women’s basketball team lost a closely contested 55-52 match to the 2-8 York Lions Friday night, but rebounded against the 6-5 Laurentian Lady Voyageurs with a 71-62 victory Saturday. The weekend split pushed the Gaels to fifth in the OUA East with a record of 5-7.
Head coach Dave Wilson described the team’s play against York with just one word, “Poor.”
“We played well for the majority of the game; it’s just the lack of focus at critical moments during the game that decided the outcome,” he said. “It’s unacceptable.”
He said the team is moving in the right direction, though.
“We’ve made strides after a long break,” he said. “They understand the importance of every game and that mental breakdowns will get you every time.”
Queen’s took a 25-24 lead into halftime Friday before coming out flat in the third quarter and falling back as much as 10 points. A fourth-quarter comeback fell just short when Kendra Walker-Roche, who led the Gaels with 15 points, missed a three pointer at the final buzzer that would have pushed the game into overtime.
Erin Skippon recorded a double-double for Queen’s with 11 points and 13 rebounds. She said the loss wasn’t due to physical ability.
“I think we did almost everything to defeat ourselves,” she said. “They’re not a better team player-to-player, everyone just needs to get into the game mentally, be prepared and want it.”
Saturday evening began like a rerun at Bartlett Gym as Queen’s went to the locker room trailing Laurentian 31-29 after a close first half. The difference came in the third quarter. Instead of dropping behind, the Gaels came up with five straight defensive stops, producing a 10-point lead they never relinquished.
Wilson said he was pleased with the improvement from one day to the next.
“I like winning better,” he said. “[Laurentian] plays a much more physical game as we looked at on film and adjusted adequately on
Wilson said winning the turnover battle was huge for his team.
“We got better with our precision and they had very poor passes that led to five turnovers and we quickly went from being two down to being 10 up,” he said.
Despite the win, Wilson said there was still room for improvement.
“We still need to do a better job of taking care of the basketball and working on our communication to help each other get through screens,” he said. “I’m upset that their effort today isn’t there daily. If we continue to put this effort forward every day, we’ll be well off.” Four players reached double-digit point totals for the Gaels, including Brittany Moore with a team-leading 19 points and Alaina Porter with 16 points. Skippon and Walker-Roche contributed 13 and 12 points, respectively.