TWU basketball: Top-ranked Huskies overpower Spartans

Trinity Western Spartans guard Rochelle Thoutenhoofd looks for an opening during Saturday night
Trinity Western Spartans guard Rochelle Thoutenhoofd looks for an opening during Saturday night's contest against the top-ranked Saskatchewan Huskies.
— image credit: Scott Stewart/TWU Athletics

They hung tough for the first quarter against the country's top team, but in the end, the Saskatchewan Huskies were too much for the Trinity Western Spartans women's basketball team.

The Spartans (1-17) trailed by a bucket following the first 10 minutes, but after that, it was all Saskatchewan as the Huskies (16-2) rolled to an 89-42 victory at the Langley Events Centre on Saturday night.

Saskatchewan also won 67-43 the night before.

During the past few Spartans losses, head coach Cherly Jean-Paul has been encouraged by signs from her young squad. But on Saturday, from the second quarter on, the coach felt her team did not respond.

"I thought for the most part, we followed the game plan in the first quarter, but anytime you relax against a team, they make adjustments," she said. "They showed different looks to us; they started to transition a little more and we weren't getting back.

"As much as we were happy with the first 10 minutes, we didn't respond well in the second quarter and beyond."

The Huskies outscored the Spartans 25-7 in the second quarter, 21-16 in the third, and 27-5 in the fourth for the final margin of victory.

The Spartans shot just 25 per cent from the field and were out-rebounded 42-21.

Holly Strom and Keely Goertzen were the lone players to reach double figures, with 10 points apiece.

"We set some goals for today's game that we didn't meet and that's disappointing," Jean-Paul said. "It's really hard when you're playing a team of this caliber, it's not just about mistakes that cost you points, it's missed opportunities that cost you points."

In Friday's game, the Huskies raced out to a 39-16 halftime lead. The Spartans were much more competitive in the second half, with Saskatchewan holding a slight 28-27 advantage.

"It was a great adjustment in the second half," Jean-Paul said. "I thought we did a better job of forcing them to stop us rather than stopping ourselves.

"And when we can play a whole game like that, we look a lot different."

Tiffany Olsen led the way with 21 points.

The Spartans close out the home part of the regular season when the host the 0-18 Brandon Bobcats at the Langley Events Centre. Tip-off is 6 p.m. on Friday and 5 p.m. on Saturday.

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