Women’s basketball hosts Victoria in Fall final

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November 27, 2013, LANGLEY, British Columbia (ISN) – The Trinity Western women’s basketball team will play in its final weekend series of the fall semester looking to snap a seven-game winless skid when it hosts Victoria Friday at 6 p.m. and Saturday at 3:30 p.m. at the Langley Events Centre.

Both games can be seen live at twu.canadawest.tv

After opening the season with a victory over Calgary, the Spartans have been unable to return to the win column ever since as they struggled through a difficult fall schedule.

This weekend, it’s the 5-3 Vikes who will provide the opposition and a win for TWU or, better yet, a weekend sweep, would go a long way to stoking the team’s confidence heading into the Christmas break.

Last year, the Spartans lost both of their games against the Vikes on the road. However, the last the time Victoria was at the LEC, the Spartans earned a weekend split, losing Friday before winning 69-55 Saturday.

TRINITY WESTERN SPARTANS (1-7)

  • CIS ranking: NR
  • Pacific Division Standings: 6th (tied)
  • Last Weekend: Alberta 79-52 L, Saskatchewan 81-57 L
  • Streak: 7 losses
  • 2012-13 conference record: 7-15 (6th Pacific, missed playoffs)
  • Last CW title: N/A
  • Last CIS title: N/A

Since their season-weekend win over now 6-2 Calgary, the Spartans have lost seven games in a row and enter this weekend still in search of their second win.

Trinity Western is coming off a tough road trip in which it lost to now No. 3 Alberta and now No. 4 Saskatchewan on back-to-back nights.

However, with last weekend’s games being played on Thursday and Friday, the Spartans have had plenty of time to prepare for its upcoming weekend series with Victoria, as they’ll endeavor to bounce back against a Vikes team that has won four in a row.

The last time Victoria played at the Langley Events Centre, the Spartans earned a 69-55 win in a game that saw TWU hold Victoria to a field goal shooting percentage of just 33.3. Trinity Western will look to duplicate that defensive effort this weekend.

Through their first eight games, the Spartans are averaging 59 points per game (12th in Canada West) and 71 points against per game (13th in CW). The Spartans season’s best for both points scored and points allowed came in their home-opening 66-58 win over Calgary.

After shooting 92.9 per cent from the free throw line last Friday against Saskatchewan, the Spartans improved to 66.9 per cent on the year from the line (11th in CW). From the field, TWU is shooting 35.4 per cent (11th in CW) while its opposition is shooting 43.6 per cent (16th in CW).

Individually, Holly Strom (Calgary) continues to lead TWU offensively, averaging 16.0 points per game (tied for 6th in CW) while Janelle Traber (Abbotsford, B.C.) is second on the team in scoring with 10.4 points per game (tied for 27th in CW). Strom is also tied for sixth in Canada West in rebounds with 8.0 per game and is tied for fifth in Canada West in blocked shots with 1.1 per game. Laurissa Weigl (Stony Plain, Alta.) is 20th in the conference with 6.1 boards per game and also ninth in Canada West with 2.3 steals per game.

VICTORIA VIKES (5-3)

  • CIS ranking: NR
  • Pacific Division Standings: 3rd
  • Last Weekend: Manitoba 59-43 W, Winnipeg 66-51 W
  • Streak: 4 wins
  • 2012-13 conference record: 16-6 (3rd Pacific)
  • 2013 playoffs: 0-2
  • Last CW title: 1999
  • Last CIS title: 2002

Coming into this weekend, Victoria is riding a four-game winning streak and, thanks in large part to their impressive 3-point shooting, will arrive in Langley with a tidy 5-3 record and in third place in the Pacific Division.

While the loss of the now-graduated Debbie Yeboah, who was a Canada West First Team All-Star last year, no doubt has been felt in Victoria, the Vikes perimetre scoring has certainly helped make up for her absence.

Victoria is currently leads the conference in 3-point shooting percentage at 36.9 per cent and is tied for second in Canada West with 6.5 3-point field goals per game. Led by Shaylyn Crisp, who is third in Canada West in 3-point shooting percentage at 45 per cent, the Vikes have four players in the top 10 in shooting percentage from beyond the arc. Ashley McGinnis is at 43.8 per cent (4th in CW), Jenny Lewis is a 40 per cent (8th in CW) and Jessica Renfrew is at 39.5 per cent (9th in CW). Renfrew leads the team with 2.1 3-point field goals per game (tied for 6th in CW).

With their collective hot hands from distance, the Vikes are tied for fourth in Canada West with 68.1 points for per game. Beyond their 3-point shooting, Victoria is also tied for third in blocked shots with 3.3 per game and fifth in rebounding margin, at +4.4 per game. Defensively, the Vikes are giving up 63.6 points per game, which is 10th in Canada West.

With 14.6 points per game, Renfrew leads the team in scoring and is 11th in the conference. Jenna Bugiardini, who was named to last year’s CIS All-Rookie Team, is second on the team in scoring with 12 points per game (21st in CW). Point guard Cassandra Goodis is second in the conference with 5.1 assists per game while Lewis and Goodis are first (95 per cent) and second (90 per cent) in Canada West respectively in free throw percentage. 

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