Jessie Brown scored a team-high 21 points as the TWU Spartans beat Alberta 70-64 to win their Canada West quarter-final playoff series. Scott Stewart TWU Athletics

History for Spartans

First-time in program history Trinity Western women’s basketball team has advanced to Canada West semifinals

This season has been all about program firsts for the Trinity Western Spartans women’s basketball team and this weekend was no different.

The Spartans knocked off the Alberta Pandas 70-64 on Friday night at the Langley Events Centre, and combined with a 62-53 win in game one, took the Canada West best-of-three quarter-final series 2-0.

The victory advances TWU to the Canada West semifinal series for the first time ever.

Previous Spartans accomplishments this season include back-to-back winning seasons, a program-high 16 regular season victories, earning a U hosting Canada West quarter-finals, and now playing in the conference semifinals.

The teams were tied at the half in game two and the Spartans took a two-point lead into the fourth quarter. The Pandas were within two points late in the fourth quarter but Kayla Gordon and Tessa Ratzlaff each knocked down a pair of clutch free throws in the final 20 seconds and Ratzlaff also securing a huge offensive rebound.

“I thought we did a great job of responding to their momentum pushes and their big shots. I don’t think we ever unraveled to the point where we were out of control,” said TWU coach Cheryl Jean-Paul.

“(Game one), it was about tempo and today they tried to slow us down with their press and I thought we stayed disciplined enough to take care of the press.

“I just thought there were really strong stretches of composure and that’s what you need to win big games.”

Jessie Brown had 14 of her team-high 21 points in the second half while Ratzlaff had 18 points and Gordon had 17 points and a team-high 12 rebounds.

SEE: TWU trio taking Spartans to new heights

The trio all surpassed the 1,000-point plateau for their Spartans careers this past season and have been central to helping the program achieve success. Jean-Paul also said it was fitting all three had a big hand in the team’s game two victory,

“Those two years when we went to split divisions, those three (Ratzlaff, Gordon and Brown) had to learn a lot of hard lessons. They had to go up against all-stars every weekend and they had to go against a ranked team almost every other weekend,” she said.

“I think the benefits are that now they’re playing like all-stars and we’re playing like a ranked team. I wouldn’t change those years for anything because I think it really set the tone for what we’re achieving right now.

With the victory, the Spartans — ranked ninth nationally — will now travel to Saskatoon to battle the No. 7 Saskatchewan Huskies. The teams split their regular season games back in January.

Games one and two are Feb. 22 and 23, and if necessary, game three would be Feb. 24.



sports@langleytimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Tessa Ratzlaff had 18 points and six rebounds as the Spartans advanced to the Canada West semifinals. Scott Stewart TWU Athletics

Just Posted

Langley election signs could cost candidates

A deposit could be required to put up election signs in 2022.

Family band from Aldergrove wins youth music award

The Springmans won a Fraser Valley Music Award for their album Happy Beach.

Langley runner nominated for B.C. university athlete of the year

Trinity Western’s Regan Yee ‘surprised and delighted’

VIDEO: New homes for old dogs

Langley event has high number of senior dogs up for adoption

VIDEO: Langley Community Music School celebrates 50th anniversary with a sold-out show

LCMS is welcoming Jon Kimura Parker for the 50th anniversary kick-off concert on Jan. 26.

2-for-1: Total lunar eclipse comes with supermoon bonus

On Sunday night, the moon, Earth and sun lined up to create the eclipse, which was visible throughout North and South America

Doug Ford says the Liberals’ carbon tax will plunge Canada into recession

The Ontario premier said there are already warning signs of difficult economic times ahead

Kamala Harris opens U.S. presidential bid in challenge to Trump

The 54-year old portrayed herself as a fighter for justice, decency and equality in a video distributed by her campaign

B.C.’s largest public-sector union wants inquiry into money laundering, drugs

Union officials say Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby have not ruled out the possibility of a public inquiry

Woman offers luxury Alberta home for just $25 and a flair for the written word

Alla Wagner ran into health problems, which forced her to list the 5,000-square-foot estate at market value

46% of Canadians $200 or less away from financial insolvency: poll

45% cent of those surveyed say they will need to go further into debt to pay their living and family expenses

5 to start your day

Large fire breaks out near Kinder Morgan facility, Women’s Marches take to the streets across B.C. and more

World economy forecast to slow in 2019 amid trade tensions

For Canada, the IMF’s estimate for growth in 2019 was 1.9 per cent, down from expected global growth of 3.5 per cent

Most Read