Vikes make it lights out for Wesmen in fourth-straight win


By Ali Lee, Vikes Communications

(ISN) – VICTORIA, B.C. – The University of Victoria Vikes women’s basketball team completed the home sweep over the CIS No. 7-ranked Winnipeg Wesmen on Jan. 17 at McKinnon Gym. Despite missing out on the final 36 seconds becuase of a power outage the Vikes took game two with a 72-65 score line. Both teams now hold 6-6 records in the Pioneers Division of the Canada West.

Quality team play was evident for the home side as four Vikes shot in double digits. Six-foot-one Nicole Karstein was exceptional in the paint finishing with a double-double of 19 points and 10 rebounds.Cassandra Goodis commanded the floor, earning 10 points and nine assists, while Jessica Renfrew and Amira Giannattasio finished with 13 and 12 points, respectively.

It was all down to Winnipeg’s No. 6 and 15 as Samantha Donald and Skylar Boulanger proved difficult for the Vikes to manage, combining for 39 of the team’s points. Boulanger dominated the paint with 21 points, while Donald had 18. The Wesmen looked to lack experience without fifth year Stephanie Kleysen but sparks of energy from sophomore Brittania Brown showed promise for a gritty Winnipeg squad.

Renfrew got the Vikes off to a good start in the game as her first two three-point attempts dropped with ease to give the fifth year eight of the team’s first 10 points. It seemed as if the Vikes were going to pick up where they left off from last night but six-foot Boulanger battled well under the rim to finish with eight first-quarter points for the Wesmen. A following late run by Winnipeg kept the game in check, as the teams remained tied at 18 entering the second.

Patience in passing allowed several different Vikes to get on the board as the home team went on to out-score the Wesmen 23-10 in the second. Rookie Giannattasio came off the bench to give the Vikes seven unanswered points, while Karstein found her comfort in the paint adding six points near the end of the quarter. Some missed assignments allowed Taylor Thorkelsson to grab a few easy layups to close the gap but the Wesmen trailed 41-28 at the break.

Winnipeg had a big third quarter thanks to the two-man show of Boulanger and Donald. The pair combined for 18 of the Wesmen’s 25 third-quarter points. Shaylyn Crisp and Karstein kept the Vikes in check, scoring wise, as Victoria lead 57-53 at the end of the third.

In the fourth quarter Winnipeg started to chip away at the Vikes’ lead getting as close to within two points at the start of the quarter but some good scoring runs lead by Karstein, as well as a key three pointer from Goodis kept the home team up. Late momentum from Winnipeg was cut short as an unexpected power outage on the University of Victoria campus ended the game with 36 seconds on the clock. Coaches and officials agreed to end the game with the score as is. Victoria finished with the 72-65 win, their fourth-straight victory as both teams now hold a 6-6 record.

Up next the Vikes will hit the road for back-to-back games against Calgary on Jan. 23-24. Winnipeg will play Brandon, first on the road on Jan. 22 and then at home on Jan. 24. All games will be streamed with live video and stats

UVIC: 18-10-25-12 : 65
WPG: 18-23-16-15 : 72

UVIC: Nicole Karstein (19), Jessica Renfrew (13), Amira Giannattasio (12)
WPG: Skylar Boulanger (21), Samantha Donald (18)

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