BRANDON, MB — After a disappointing overtime loss on Friday night, the UBC Okanagan Heat came into the second game against the Brandon Bobcats in Manitoba hoping for a win and a weekend split. It was not to be, as the Bobcats once again pulled the win out late, earning the 66-60 victory on home court.
As in the Friday night contest, the Saturday night outcome wasn’t clear until the final buzzer sounded. The Heat defence put together a strong quarter in the fourth, and UBC Okanagan were able to pull within two, 57-55, with two minutes left in the game. Rookie Nicole Hart was able to draw a foul with a minute and a half left, giving the Heat a chance to set up in the Bobcats zone. The inbound play resulted in Hart getting the ball with no one around her under the basket, tying the game up at 57 with just over a minute left. Keisha Cox and Shenelle Tamminen then traded threes, tying the game again at 60 with 49 seconds to go. A Heat foul with 35 seconds to go put the Bobcats into the bonus, and the two ensuing free throws were made by Brandon’s Amy Williams, giving them the lead again. From then on, shut-down defence from the Bobcats and consistent free-throw shooting put the game out of reach as the Heat were forced to foul late. The final buzzer went with Brandon comfortably up by six.
UBC Okanagan’s Claire Elliott led all scorers in the game, finishing with 19 points. Elliott also had four rebounds, four steals, and three assists. Mikaela Stanton (15), Amy Williams (14), and Keisha Cox (12) led the Bobcats offence on the night. Stanton and Cox tied with the Heat’s Shenelle Tamminen for most three-pointers made in the game, with two apiece, and Brandon’s Keegan Robinson led the game with eight rebounds.
In the first half, UBC Okanagan’s Jordan Korol and Brandon’s Keegan Robinson led all scorers with seven points. Like Korol and Robinson, both teams were pretty much even through the first twenty minutes, and the score was 27-24 in favour of the Heat at the half.
Brandon put together the highest score in a quarter for either team in the third, scoring 25 in the frame. The Heat started strong, with a three-pointer from Chloe Kennedy getting the scoring started in the second half, and UBC Okanagan went up 32-34 a minute and a half into the quarter. A converted and-one play by Claire Elliot tied the game back up at 38-38 with 3:32 left in the third, cutting the momentum of a six-point run by the Bobcats. That run by the Bobcats to take back the lead was just the beginning for their offence in the third quarter though, as the last four minutes constituted a 13-6 run for the home team, who took a 49-41 lead into the fourth quarter.
The Brandon Bobcats (2-2) will play their next games on the road, when they travel to play the University of Saskatchewan Huskies on November 18 & 19. The UBC Okanagan Heat (0-4) will play their next games at home next weekend, when they will host the Mount Royal Cougars