by Mark Janzen
December 31, 2013, LANGLEY, British Columbia (ISN – The Trinity Western women’s basketball team suffered its second exhibition loss in as many days as the Spartans, who lost to Simon Fraser Monday, dropped a 73-52 decision against visiting Thompson Rivers Tuesday afternoon at the Langley Events Centre.
After a back-and-forth opening half that saw TRU ahead by just seven points, 31-24, at the break, the WolfPack put together a dominant third quarter, outscoring TWU 24-12, to build an insurmountable lead.
With a 57-36 lead heading into the fourth quarter, TRU maintained its lead over the final 10 minutes to earn a 21-point win.
Thompson River’s perimetre shooting also proved to be a difference-maker as the WolfPack drained nine 3-pointers while TWU was held off the score sheet entirely from beyond the arc.
The WolfPack was led by the three-pronged attack of Sydney Williams, who had 21 points – 19 of which came in the second half – and six rebounds, Jorri Duxbury, who had 20 points and nine rebounds, and Taiysa Worsfeld, who had 19 points – all of which came in the first half – and five rebounds. Worsfeld was also perfect from the free throw line, going 14 for 14.
Trinity Western’s Chantelle Martin (Surrey, B.C.) posted a career-high 22 points to lead the Spartans, while Kayla Gordon (Prince George, B.C.) had six points and nine rebounds and Holly Strom (Calgary) added six points and eight boards. Martin’s previous career-high was 11 points, which she has earned three times.
The Spartans are now 4-15 overall, including exhibition and league play, while TRU improves to 8-10.
“It’s the story of one really bad quarter for us,” said Spartans coach Cheryl Jean-Paul. “It’s happened almost every single game this year. We’ve competed and then for some reason we just forget how the game goes.
“It’s really frustrating in some ways because we had every opportunity that we could have asked for in the first half. We had lay-up opportunities. We had opportunities for great offensive board scores. We had great opportunities that were created off of screens. The challenge is that we have to take advantage of those chances. We need to understand that missed opportunities do come back to haunt you and we’re going to have to learn from this.”
Led by Worsfeld, who had 13 points in the first quarter and eight from the free throw line, the WolfPack opened a 17-13 lead after 10 minutes.
In the second quarter, TRU extended its advantage to seven points thanks in part to six more made free throws from Worsfeld and took a 31-24 edge into the break.
After 20 minutes, TRU was 14 for 16 from the free throw line while TWU was six for eight.
The Spartans Martin led TWU with nine points in the opening half.
However, in the third quarter, the WolfPack took over.
With TRU’s Williams collecting 10 points in the third quarter alone and Duxbury nabbing seven, the WolfPack blew the game open by outscoring TWU 26-12 in the first 10 minutes of the second half.
The WolfPack shot 11 for 20 from the field in the third quarter, compared to the Spartans who shot five for 20, as the visitors put the game out of TWU’s reach.
With the result all but finalized, the teams traded points down the stretch as they each scored 16 points in the fourth quarter.
Martin added 13 points in the second half to put together the Spartans fourth best individual offensive output of the season.
“I thought Chantelle Martin regained her confidence in that game and she looked like the scorer we knew that she could be,” Jean-Paul said.
Trinity Western resumes its Canada West schedule Jan. 10-11 when it travels to play Manitoba and Winnipeg. Meanwhile, Thompson Rivers is on the road against Regina Jan. 9 and Brandon Jan. 10.
Game Notes: TRU outrebounded TWU 52-46…TWU had 16 turnovers to TRU’s 18.