Spartans Complete Weekend Sweep of Mount Royal

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January 27, 2013, Langley, BC (ISN) – With Holly Strom (Calgary) contributing her second double-double in as many nights, the Trinity Western women’s basketball team earned a 73-61 win over Mount Royal to complete the weekend sweep Saturday at the Langley Events Centre.

After Strom had 29 points and 10 rebounds in Friday’s win, the Spartans leading scorer put up 19 points and 13 boards Saturday, to give TWU its third win in four outings and its first weekend sweep of the year. Strom, whose effort marked her fourth double-double of the season, also had a game-high five steals and the contest’s only block.

With the win, the Spartans move into a tie with Mount Royal with each team possessing a 5-11 record.

The Spartans, who led from start to finish, had 10 different scorers and three who hit double-digits. After Strom, it was Chantelle Martin (Surrey, B.C.) and Janelle Traber (Abbotsford, B.C.) each putting up 11 points. Traber also added six rebounds while Emily Knauff (Maple Ridge, B.C.) had a team-high seven boards to go with nine points and four assists.

For the Cougars, Emily Larson (Calgary) led the way with 17 points along with four rebounds and three assists while Hilary Annich (St. Albert, Alta.) and Lisa Ivanics (Foremost, Alta.) each had 12 points. Jordan MacLean (Hinton, Alta.) had a team-high seven rebounds.

“We gritted this win out,” said Spartans coach Cheryl Jean-Paul. “It wasn’t pretty, but we just found a way to get the victory. I guess the word is determined. This was a determined group today. We were determined to do the things we had to do to get the win and we saw that from everyone who stepped onto the floor. We got some great scoring from our bench today and Holly was once again consistent and working hard.

“We didn’t panic when they scored a few quick points. We have had the tendency to let teams go on runs without scoring ourselves, but that didn’t happen tonight. When you have multiple scoring options on the floor, you can respond with a score because everybody was prepared to get the job done.”

With a 12-0 advantage in free throw opportunities in the first quarter, and sinking seven of them, the Spartans were the dominant side early on, staking themselves to a 15-9 lead after 10 minutes. The Spartans had as much as nine-point lead, at 13-4, but a 3-pointer by Ivanics at the buzzer got MRU within six points, at 15-9, going into the second frame. Strom led the way for TWU with seven points, including going five for six from the free throw line.

Early in the second quarter, the Spartans extended their lead to 10 points at 27-17 and then to 12 points at 31-19. However, with an 8-0 run from MRU, capped by a lay-up from Carrie Campbell (Raymond, Alta.), the Cougars got right back into the game, at 31-27. A running floater from TWU’s Stephanie Carkner (Port Coquitlam, B.C.) gave the home side a 36-29 lead at halftime. The Cougars out-rebounded TWU 23-13 in the first half, but it was the Spartans 9-1 advantage in made free throws that proved to be the difference.

In the third quarter, TWU pushed its lead to as much as 10 points late in the frame, at 52-42, but a pair of made free throws from Larson with less than a second left made it a single-digit difference, 52-44, going into the fourth quarter. The Cougars got as close as three points early in the second half, at 38-35, but, ultimately that was as close as they would get throughout the rest of the game.

In the fourth quarter, the Spartans never let the Cougars get back into the contest. Mount Royal got to within five points at 52-47 but would get no closer. Trinity Western maintained control the rest of the way and extended its lead down the stretch to a game-high 14 before holding on for the 12-point win.

The Spartans are back on the court Jan. 31 and Feb. 1 when they travel to Kamloops, B.C. to take on Thompson Rivers. Mount Royal will be back in the Lower Mainland next weekend as the Cougars will return to play UBC Feb. 1-2.

Game Notes: TWU shot 41.5 per cent from the field while MRU shot 35.9 per cent…after getting out-rebounded 23-13 in the first half, TWU out-boarded MRU 29-20 in the second half…MRU was 4 for 13 from 3-point range while TWU was 1 for 11.