Match 1: Lethbridge Kodiaks 99, Douglas Royals 44
A blazing start and tremendous defensive effort carried the third-seeded Lethbridge Kodiaks to an overwhelming 99-44 victory over the number-six Douglas Royals in the first game of the 2017 CCAA Women's Basketball National Championship.
Before the game was five minutes old, Lethbridge, winners of the Alberta College Athletics Association title, held a 13-2 led. They built on the margin consistently, hitting five three-pointers in the first half and coming away with a 52-18 edge.
The Kodiaks onslaught, one day after head coach Brad Karren was honoured as CCAA coach of the year and Logan Moncks became an all-Canadian, followed an unbeaten ACAC season and formed a clear threat to all other rivals in the eight-team final tournament.
Led by Player of the Game Sunder West's 26 points, Lethbridge had four other players reach double figures: Moncks and Shayna Mathison 15 each, Emma Lowry 11 and Jaclyn Heggie 10. Sarah Jorgenson, with 13 points, and Player of the Game Rachel Beauchamp, with nine, were best for Douglas, which won the British Columbia college crown.
Total domination by Lethbridge was reflected in rebounds (54 to 35), assists (26 to 7) and steals (19 to 6). The Kodiaks also forced 32 turnovers and collected 19 steals, with their defensive pressure keeping the Royals uncomfortable from the opening tip to the final buzzer.
Match 2: Nomades de Montmorency 75, MSVU Mystics 58
Thanks to their massive advantage in rebounds, the Nomades de Montmorency built a comfortable first-half lead and cruised past the MSVU Mystics 75-58.
With five players at least six feet tall, the Nomades dominated both backboards and scored many of their points on second or third chances at close range. The edge wound up at 59-24 and was most pronounced in the second and third quarters when the game changed from a close contest to an easy victory for Montmorency.
All-Canadian Maelle Gillies was good on eight of her nine shots and totaled 15 points, trailing only her teammate Frederique Beauchamp, who collected 18 points and was named Player of the Game. Maurane Corbin added 11 points and grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds.
Maddy Hiscock led MSVU's offense with 17 points and a team-high seven rebounds, earning the Player of the Game title for her team. Kate Gallant, Maria Carroll and Marika Williams contributed nine points each to MSVU's total.
Match 3: NAIT Ooks 55, Humber Hawks 52
A full 40 minutes of grim and consistent defensive effort was key to the NAIT Ooks posting the the upset over the Humber Hawks.
Despite hitting on only 12 of 21 free throws, the eighth-seeded Ooks battled to a 55-52 triumph over the top-seeded Hawks, who won the 2016 title and completed their Ontario regular season and playoffs without suffering a single defeat.
The Ooks now advance to the semi-final round, where they fell to Humber last year before settling for the third place bronze medal.
On attack and defence, the Ooks were led by 6-foot-3 Player of the Game Torey Hill, who played with evident support on both knees. She finished with 13 points, tied with guard Katie Waring for tops on her team, and also collected a game-high 12 rebounds. Fifth-year guard Jordan Enns collected eight of her 10 points in the first quarter, helping NAIT to a 22-13 first-quarter lead.
Ceejay Nofuente, honoured on Tuesday as CCAA Player of the Year for the second consecutive season, managed 18 points for Humber and added 10 rebounds making her Humber's player of the Game.
So firm was NAIT's defence that the victory was achieved even though the Ooks scored only six points in the second quarter and eight points in the closing 10 minutes.
Match 4: Dawson Blues 74, Holland Hurricanes 60
The RSEQ's Dawson Blues put the cap on opening day with a 74-60 victory over the Holland Hurricanes.
Most of the winners' edge was built in the second quarter when player-of-the-game Dahomee Forges collected a large share of her team-high 20 points. Also prominent in the Dawson's offence were Tamara Farqhar with 17 points and Sorelle Ineza with 13.
Holland's player of the game was Chelsea Slawter-Wig, who worked hard at the both ends of the floor while collecting 14 points.
The top point-getter for Holland, Jayla Verney, scored 21 points and led her teams in steals. Darcy Zinck also reached double figures; 10 points on 3-of-12 shooting, while battling successfully for a game-high 12 rebounds.
Day Two Schedule – Friday, March 17, 2017
1pm – Bronze Medal Quarter-Final – Douglas Royals vs. MSVU Mystics
3pm – Bronze Medal Quarter-Final – Humber Hawks vs. Holland Hurricanes
6pm – Semi-Final #1 – Lethbridge Kodiaks vs. Nomades de Montmorency
8pm – Semi-Final #2 – NAIT Ooks vs. Dawson Blues
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