Rebounding at the ARC

Women’s basketball overcomes tough game Friday to win Saturday

Guard Liz Boag drives to the basket against Laurier.
Guard Liz Boag drives to the basket against Laurier.

On Friday, the women’s basketball team kicked off their season with a 63-65 loss to the Laurier Golden Hawks at the ARC. The Gaels evened their weekend against the Waterloo Warriors on Saturday to grab their first win of the season 66-42.

Head coach Dave Wilson said the team came out strong in the first quarter of their season opener.

“We opened the game very well,” he said. “A very, very fast first quarter.”

The Gaels led by as much as 16 points during the second quarter but the Golden Hawks crawled back into the game, running the Gaels’ lead down to 29-27 at halftime.

“The second quarter is where they started to jam us up and slowly gained ground as much as they could,” Wilson said. “From there, it continued into the third quarter in the same way.”

Laurier built up an eight -point lead in the third quarter that proved insurmountable. After coming within four points in the final frame, the Gaels lost by a 10 point deficit.

Fourth-year guard Brittany Moore led the team with 18 points and six rebounds while first-year wing Gemma Bullard added nine points.

Wilson said his team is well prepared for the season but they’re battling player injuries.

“We’re so far ahead of where we were last year at this point because [the team] came in with such basketball knowledge,” he said. “The only thing that’s set us back is the injuries. It’s a tough situation.”

Saturday was a whole different story for the Gaels, who trounced the Waterloo Warriors in a strong offensive effort which saw them dominate early in the game.

They pulled ahead quickly to a 28-9 lead at the end of the first quarter and maintained a strong lead throughout.

“I thought we played with lots of energy, although I was disappointed that we’re still not [communicating],” Wilson said. “Other than that, I loved the way we pushed the ball, shared the ball and attacked the rim.”

Bullard added 19 of her 21 points in the first half, helping the Gaels to a 41-17 advantage at halftime.

“We wanted to stay focused and make sure we didn’t go into that game thinking it was going to be easy,” Bullard said, adding they weren’t without challenges.

“I think we stopped communicating on defence,” she said. “They got a lot of open looks and a lot of offensive rebounds.”

The score remained stagnant after that, as they finished the third period up 54-32 and held the lead to a 24 point victory.

Bullard said she’s satisfied with the weekend’s games as a whole.

“[It’s] not too bad,” she said. “It would have been nice to come out 2-0 but you just have to learn from it and move on and hopefully we’ll be more successful next weekend.”

The Gaels move on to Guelph to battle the Gryphons next weekend.

“That will be our first road game, so it’ll be interesting to see how we cope with that,” she said. “It’s looking positive. As long as we keep improving, I think we’ll be a force to be reckoned with.”

The Gaels will be on the road next week facing the Guelph Gryphons on Friday and then the Brock Badgers Saturday.

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