Bugiardini battles Birds as Vikes lose out in final moments

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(ISN) – VANCOUVER – Third year guard Jenna Bugiardini led the University of Victoria Vikes women’s basketball team with more than half the team’s points in their 63-60 loss to the UBC Thunderbirds at War Memorial Gym in Vancouver on Nov. 7. Fifth-year guard Kris Young scored the final eight points of the game to give her No. 2-ranked Thunderbirds (1-0) over the Vikes (2-1) in their home opener.

 

With UBC down 60-55 with three minutes to go, Young hit two free throws and then pivotal back-to-back jump shots with just nine seconds left in the game to put her team back in the lead 61-60.

Despite Young’s heroics, Victoria had one last chance to win the game and head coach Dani Sinclair drew up a perfect play. Coming off a back screen, Jenna Bugiardini had a wide-open layup opportunity for the win but UBC guard Cassandra Knievel came out of nowhere to knock the shot away and preserve the home side’s slim lead.

The Vikes fouled on the ensuing inbound play and Young finished the game off with two more free throws. The veteran scored 23 points, 10 of them in the deciding fourth quarter, to lead UBC. The North Vancouver native added 16 rebounds in a spectacular performance. Harleen Sidhu chipped in with 15 points and 11 rebounds.

Bugiardini was just as good for Victoria, notching 32 points on 13-of-24 shooting from the field. Point guard Cassandra Goodis had 13 points, six assists, two steals and eight rebounds before fouling out near the end of the fourth quarter.

Before Young’s late-game surge, it was the Vikes who had an 8-0 run of their own to take the lead 60-55. Goodis hit a pair of foul shots. Bugiardini followed up with two of her own and then a layup with 3:06 left in the game to push her team back ahead 56-55. Rookie Amira Giannattasio capped off the run with an inside layup that gave Victoria its biggest lead of the night.

Young’s foul shot with 2:11 left before halftime gave UBC its largest advantage at 36-25, and the home side took a 39-31 lead into the mid-game break.

The Vikes got back into the proceedings in the third with a momentum-changing 12-0 run, with six of those points coming from former CIS All-Rookie member Bugiardini, to take a 45-43 lead with 3:49 left in theframe, setting up the fantastic final 10 minutes of play.

Victoria made 24 of its 63 shots from the field for a 38.1 per cent clip, while UBC was 24-of-68 (35.3 per cent) on Friday night. The T-Birds also out-rebounded the Vikes 49-40.

The teams will meet again at 5 p.m. on Nov. 8 at War Memorial Gym. The game will be available with live video and stats at uvic.canadawest.tv.

SCORING SUMMARY
UBC: 21-18-10-14 : 63
UVIC: 20-11-17-12 : 60

SCORING LEADERS
UBC: Kris Young (23), Harleen Sidhu (15)
UVIC: Jenna Bugiardini (32), Cassandra Goodis (13)

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