The Huskies women’s basketball team won silver at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport championships in Windsor this past weekend after losing 63-49 to the host Windsor Lancers in the gold medal final.
Going into the hostile and noisy St. Denis Centre that is home to the Lancers, the Huskies appeared ready as they got off to a great start leading 14-6 midway through the first quarter.
However, after the Lancer’s put together a 22-2 run that went all the way into the second quarter, the Huskies could not gain back the lead.
“We couldn’t quite stay with them,” said fifth-year Huskies player Jill Humbert. “We’re not going to win a game scoring 49 points, that’s for sure.”
“They’re a momentum team,” added fellow fifth-year Marci Kiselyk. “A lot of their scoring came in bursts — they’d get eight, ten, twelve points in a row — and that’s pretty tough to kill that momentum once it starts going.”
The Huskies appeared to regroup after halftime, coming out of the dressing room with a 10-1 run that tied the game at 35. Unfortunately, the Huskies couldn’t keep that focus as the Lancers pulled away significantly.
“We kind of just made some uncharacteristic turnovers and they capitalized on them,” said Humbert.
Lancers guard Korissa Williams had four steals in the game, while CIS most valuable player, Jessica ClemenÃ§on, prevented a lot of the Huskies’ inside scoring with seven blocked shots.
ClemenÃ§on also put up 18 points for the Lancers.
“She’s a good player and she really battles,” said Kiselyk.
The tournament MVP was Lancers guard Miah-Marie Langlois. She said that it was her team’s bench that won the game.
“We played ten players and it gave the starters enough time to catch our breath and stay strong.”
The Huskies, on the other hand, only played seven players and, by the fourth, were missing most of their shots. Their first half shooting percentage of 45.5 dropped to 39.1 in the second half, and their three-point percentage dropped from 60 to 30.
Humbert had 15 points in the game, all of which came in the first half. Tulloch had 12 and Kiselyk was held quiet with only 2.
Miyazaki contributed 13 points to accompany her five steals and nine rebounds. She was named a tournament all-star for her weekend’s strong defensive performance.
Spindler, who was also named an all-star for her weekend’s performance, had ten rebounds and seven points.
“We played our hearts out today,” said Spindler.
“I’m so proud of my team. I would have liked to be on the other end of things, getting the gold, but silver is the best we’ve ever done,” added Kiselyk. “It’s been such a good year.”
The silver medal is the Huskies women’s best finish ever at the CIS nationals.
“It hasn’t sunk in yet, but it’s been an amazing five years with all the girls,” said Spindler of her experiences with the Huskies’ program.
Spindler, who moved to Saskatchewan from Nova Scotia, said that the Huskies have made her fall in love with the province.
“I have family here now with these girls and I don’t know if I’ll go away,” she said.