Slow start plagues the Heat in 81-53 loss to Cascades

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ubc heat

Cary Mellon

ABBOTSFORD, BC – The University of the Fraser Valley Cascades defeated the UBC Okanagan Heat, 81-53, at the Envision Athletic Centre to improve their Canada West regular season conference record to 3-2. The Heat, making their first Canada West/CIS regular season appearance in Abbotsford, fall to 0-3 in conference play.

The Cascades jumped out to an early double digit lead, holding their opponents scoreless for close to eight minutes before UBC Okanagan hit a three pointer to break the shutout. After the first quarter, UFV led by ten points. The Heat kept pace with UFV in the second quarter and the score stayed within ten points for most of the quarter before UFV scored late to take a 13 point lead into the break.

The Heat again got off to a slow start; for the second game in a row they were held scoreless well into the first quarter. Instead of being down 23-5 as they were in Calgary last week, they were down 21-10 at the end of the frame. In both games their opponent opened up the game with a huge run, 10-0 versus Calgary and 13-0 tonight.

“If we start better tomorrow, then I think we will hold better tomorrow,” stated Heat coach Heather Semeniuk.

The second half belonged to the more experienced Cascade team; they led by 15 points after the third quarter and went on to win their third straight game by 28 points.

“There could have been a little bit of fatigue,” explained coach Heather Semeniuk on the Heat fading in the second half. “Everybody played a few more minutes than they usually would. We played zone because we didn’t have Emily or Angela (Emily Kanester (1st year, Vernon, BC) was helped off the court early in the first quarter, and Angela White (2nd year, N. Vancouver, BC) is out with a wrist injury) – we can’t quite play the man to man [without those two perimeter defenders] as much. It was a bit of a compromise.”

The Cascades were led by Sarah Wierks (Chilliwack, BC) with a game high 20 point performance and 14 total rebounds. A total of five Cascades were in double figures as Nicole Wierks (Chilliwack, BC) added 16 points, Courtney Bartel (Chilliwack, BC) contributed 15 and Tessa Klassen (Winnipeg, Manitoba) and Alexa McCarthy (Chilliwack, BC) each added 11 points in the victory.

“The two Wierks sisters played very well,” commented Semeniuk. “Sarah just goes and goes. All of her points were second chance. She is such a workhorse, she gets her hands on everything; she just goes and gets it. We can’t let her do that tomorrow. We need to box her out.”

The Heat were paced by post Roslyn Huber (4th year, Kelowna, BC) with a team high 12 points. The only other Heat in double figures was guard Madison Kaneda (4th year, Vernon, BC) with 10 points. Kaneda and fellow guard Ashley Briker (3rd year, West Kelowna, BC) each pulled down 6 total rebounds for UBC Okanagan.

“I don’t think that we played our best basketball tonight,” noted Semeniuk. “I think that we can play better and that we have to come tomorrow prepared to do that. If we can just start playing better defence – that is the difference right now – we need to get more stops.”

The Heat will get a chance to even the season series tomorrow night as the Heat and Cascades square off again at the University of Fraser Valley on Saturday, November 19 at 5 p.m. in the Envision Athletics Centre in Abbotsford, BC.

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