Wesmen Alex MacIver, #3, throws it up during her team’s sweep of the Victoria Vikes last weekend. – David Seburn
The Wesmen women’s basketball team swept the Victoria Vikes last weekend (Jan. 14-15), improving their record to 12-2, while the men lost both matches to their B.C. equivalent, as well as a few key players to injury.
On Friday night, the women were led by fifth-year co-captain Catie Gooch and Amy Ogidan, who dropped 20 and 19 points respectively in their 86-65 win.
Following close behind was rookie Stephanie Kleysen who had an impressive double-double with 17 points and 15 boards.
Winnipeg was only up by five points at the end of the third quarter, but they pulled away in the fourth.
On Saturday night, the Wesmen captains led their team in scoring once again. Gooch had 16, while Ogidan had 12 points and pulled down 10 boards.
Kleysen, who had 15 boards on the night, knew she and her team had to keep their excitement over the first win in check for Saturday’s match.
“Coming off Friday night’s win we were motivated to win the next game, but we also knew it was important to stay focused and stick to the game plan we had set out,” she said. “Winning Friday means nothing for Saturday. It’s an entirely different game.”
At the half, Wesmen were up 31-28. The third quarter was a battle, and the game was tied at the end of it, 40-40.
Winnipeg’s first-year forward, Ashleigh Chichlowski hit two three-point shots in a row six minutes into the fourth quarter, giving Winnipeg the momentum to finish off the Vikes.
Second-year forward Alyssa Grant knew her Wesmen had mentally prepared for a close-scoring, action-packed game from start to finish, which gave them an advantage.
“We knew they were going to come out on Saturday fighting harder than ever,” she said. “It was important for us to come out strong and stay composed for all 40 minutes.”
Men’s basketball squad loses key players, games despite big effort
Despite falling to the Victoria Vikes on Friday and Saturday nights last weekend, the U of W men’s basketball team was competitive with the Vikes on both nights.
Their fifth-year captain, Nick Lother, went down with an injury on Friday night, and Nolin Gooding suffered an injury during Saturday night’s game. Kenny Perry, another Wesmen guard, is still out with an injury from the first half of season.
Head coach Mike Raimbault was pleased with the team’s effort last weekend, and hopes the experience will benefit the team down the road.
“We had some guys really step up when we had some key injuries. Unfortunately we were not able to hold on down the stretch,” he said. “We missed a few opportunities at key times and Victoria capitalized.”
On Friday night, the score was tight for the first three quarters but the Vikes took over in the final quarter, outscoring Winnipeg 23-9.
The following night Winnipeg was on fire in the first half, shooting an impressive 56 per cent from the field. They had the lead for the majority of the game and at the end of the third quarter Winnipeg was up by six points.
Unfortunately, they were unable to hold onto the lead in the last ten minutes, and once again the Vikes dominated the fourth quarter.
They outscored Winnipeg 29-16, to take the win, 71-64.