February 9, 2013, Langley, BC (ISN) – With a dominant second half, in which the Trinity Western women’s basketball team outscored UBC Okanagan 35-20, the Spartans earned a 60-45 win Friday at the Langley Events Centre.
In a battle between five-win teams, the Spartans (6-13) and Heat (5-15) were tied 25-25 at halftime but it was the home side breaking the game wide open in latter half en route to its most convincing home win of the season.
The victory also gives the Spartans their first three-game home winning streak since a four-game run from Nov. 28, 2008 to Jan. 3, 2009.
After shooting just 26.3 per cent from the field in the first half, the Spartans nearly doubled that percentage in the second half, shooting 51.6 per cent . The Heat shot 37.9 per cent in the first half, but just 30.4 per cent in the second half.
The Spartans were led by Holly Strom (Calgary), who had 20 points, 13 rebounds and a TWU record seven blocks. Her blocking numbers bettered the previous record of five, which was set by Corina Reimer Dec. 3, 2010 against Fraser Valley. Strom’s double-double is her fifth in a row and sixth in her last seven games. On the offence, TWU’s Emily Knauff (Maple Ridge, B.C.) contributed 14 points while Janelle Traber (Abbotsford, B.C.) added eight points.
The Heat’s top scorer was Roslyn Huber (Kelowna, B.C.) who became UBCO’s career leading scorer with nine points in the contest. Emily Kanester (Vernon, B.C.) also had nine points for the Heat while Krystal Schouten (Winnipeg) added eight points. On the glass, Huber and Jessica Jazdarehee (Coquitlam, B.C.) each had five rebounds.
“I think we just worked really hard to grind that one out,” said Spartans coach Cheryl Jean-Paul. “Our shooting percentage wasn’t anything special, but I thought we really stuck to the game plan. Defensively we made a statement. They have some players who do certain things really well and I thought we took away their looks and they really struggled to find that secondary look.
“Team play has to be the reason why we win games. I think we were trying to do a little too much individual work in the first half but in the second half out team play was the difference.”
The Heat got off to a 10-3 start in the opening quarter as they held the Spartans in check early on. However, with a late surge from the home side, TWU got to within two points, at 11-9, going into the second frame.
In the second quarter, it was back and forth from start to finish as the two teams went into the locker room tied 25-25.
In the third quarter, the Spartans took over. With the score 38-35 for TWU, the Spartans ended the quarter on 7-0 run and, after a made jumper from Luca Schmidt (Langley), the home side went up 45-35 after 30 minutes.
In the fourth quarter, the Spartans never allowed the Heat any closer than seven points as they opened the quarter with a 13-5 run to build a 58-40 lead. From there, TWU maintained a double-digit edge the rest of the way.
The two teams will meet in a rematch Saturday at 5 p.m.