Gaels open season with pair of wins at Bartlett

Women’s basketball knocks off Royal Military College and Université du Québec à Montréal to start season on high

Wing Christine Wallace rises for a layup during Queen’s 73-27 demolition of the Royal Military College Paladins on Friday night at Bartlett Gym.
Wing Christine Wallace rises for a layup during Queen’s 73-27 demolition of the Royal Military College Paladins on Friday night at Bartlett Gym.

The women’s basketball team opened their season this weekend with a league win over the RMC Paladins and an exhibition win over L’Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) Citadins.

On Friday, Queen’s hosted the Paladins in Bartlett Gym. After a tumultuous first quarter, Queen’s led 24-8 eventually strengthening their lead to finish 73-27. The win included a 21-point effort from third-year guard Brittany Moore.

Head coach Dave Wilson said he wasn’t happy with his team’s start to the game.

“I thought we played nervous. We didn’t execute well at all.”

Friday’s win broke a six-game preseason losing streak, which Wilson said could be attributed to the team still gelling together.

“The last couple weeks are what we affectionately refer to as the growing pains,” Wilson said. “Good basketball teams will exploit all of the mistakes you make. Whenever we made a mistake, it was exploited.”

On Saturday, Queen’s hosted the UQAM Citadins in Bartlett, finishing ahead with a 66-65 nailbiting win.

The Gaels led for most of the game, maintaining a six point lead at the end of each of the first three quarters. A three-pointer from UQAM’s Jessica Bibeau-Coté gave the Citadins their first lead of the game at 57-55 two minutes into the fourth quarter.

Wilson said he attributes the pitfalls of the fourth quarter to a lack of variety on offence.

“I thought we just got absolutely predictable in terms of how we ran our offence, and consequently, UQAM did a very good job of shutting us down,” he said.

The teams traded leads in the fourth. The game was tied in the final seconds, until fifth-year wing Katie Guthrie drew a foul with 2.9 seconds to play. Guthrie hit one of her two foul shots, giving Queen’s the win.

Guthrie’s game-winner capped off a team-high 18 point game. Moore added 17 points and rookie post Hanna Koposhynska led the Gaels with 10 rebounds and two blocks.

Wilson said the game was all about momentum.

“There were times when we controlled the tempo of the game, and that’s when we built up our lead,” he said. “There were times when we allowed them to control the tempo of the game and that is what really hurt us,” he said.

Wilson said he’s thankful for the opportunity to take on teams with different styles of play.

“It’s very good timing for this type of game for us,” he said. “Just to see that we aren’t complacent with a team that will play a different style.”

Guthrie said that she’s hopeful for the rest of season.

“There is something distinct every game that we have improved,” she said. “Any time that it is this early in the season and you can recognize that you are improving every game, you can’t ask for anything better than that.”

The Gaels play next on Nov. 6 against the Lakehead University Thunderwolves in Bartlett Gym.

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