An injury to a key player proved costly for women’s basketball last weekend.
Linchpin point guard Liz Boag suffered a concussion in the Gaels’ 65-55 victory over the Guelph Gryphons (3-2) on Friday. While she stayed in for the rest of the game, Boag sat out the team’s 73-64 loss to the Brock Badgers (2-3) the next day.
She also missed the Gaels’ 73-38 decimation of the York Lions (0-6) last night. Queen’s moved to 3-3 with the win.
Two starters are out now, as veteran wing Gemma Bullard has yet to dress this year. Her return remains uncertain.
Boag is averaging 12.2 points per game this season. The fifth-year guard sets the pace for Queen’s offence and draws tougher defensive looks because of it.
Her shooting percentages are down this year, but head coach Dave Wilson said he isn’t concerned.
“Two people in the area are paying attention to her … so the looks get really tough,” Wilson said. ”It’s much harder [for her] to get an open look than in the past.”
With Boag out of the lineup, third-year guard Emily Hazlett stepped up and did an admirable job in the Brock game on Saturday.
Hazlett posted her first career double-double in the loss with 19 points and 10 rebounds. She saw 37 minutes on court time, more than any other Gael.
“Haz is a hell of a player,” Wilson said. “She has the ability to run our team and she did that really well down the stretch. I have utmost confidence in her to run our team.”
Hazlett has shown tremendous improvement this season. She’s scoring 12.2 points per game, up from 6.9 in 2013-14. Her three-point shooting is at 50 per cent, good for 10th in the country.
Wing Jenny Wright scored 13 points with four assists and four rebounds against Brock. Post Robyn Pearson gobbled 11 rebounds, while guard Abby Dixon added another 13 points in the loss.
After suffering a shoulder injury in March, Hazlett was able to work on her shooting fundamentals in the offseason.
“Staying [in Kingston] with some of the girls on my team, and having the coaching staff there to push us in individual and team workouts … really helped me up my game,” she said.
Wright was effusive in her praise of Hazlett.
‘She’s coming into herself this year and she’s driving to the bucket harder than ever.” Wright said. “I know I don’t like to go against her in practice.” On Friday night, the Gryphons didn’t have an answer to the total team effort from the Gaels.
Queen’s built a heavy lead, never trailing in the game. They held an 18-point advantage heading into the final quarter.
Scoring came from every position, as four Gaels — Hazlett, Boag, Wright and Dixon — all scored in double digits. Wright led the way with 15 points, followed by 11 points from Boag. Dixon also stood out on the defensive end, notching five steals.
The Gaels once again scored by committee against York last night. Wright put up a team-high 12 points, while six other players recorded at least seven points in the blowout win.
The contest was the team’s first meeting with one of their divisional foes in the new OUA East division. Queen’s took advantage of an undisciplined York team, scoring 31 points off the Lions’ 30 turnovers.
The Gaels will make a home stand this weekend against the Algoma Thunderbirds (0-5).
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