Basketsaurs deal out beating on Pronghorns

By Cole Christensen and Amanda Hu

Following the holiday break, the University of Calgary lady basketsaurs got back to business as they hosted the Lethbridge Pronghorns in the friendly confines of the Jack Simpson Gym Jan. 11 and 12. However, the Dinos did not play the part of welcoming hosts, beating the ‘Horns 91-64 Fri. and 79-66 Sat.

Friday’s beat-down featured several easy baskets by the Dinos, mostly dueto-forced turnovers and some hard playing against sloppy Pronghorns’ defence. Calgary ran with a 23-16 lead through the first quarter, with Lethbridge attempting a strong comeback going into the half. The Dinos managed an impressive 70 per cent shooting average with the ‘Horns squeeked through the game with 35 per cent. Fifth-year forward Michelle Wilson led the ladysaurs throughout the match, pitching in with a 20-point performance. Dinos head coach Shawnee Harle was very positive in her assessment of the victory.

“[Friday’s] win was convincing,” she said. “For us, good defence leads to good offence and Fri., we forced turnovers and converted those into easy baskets at the other end.”

The second game of the weekend double-header was a different story. With both teams struggling offensively, the game remained deadlocked until a Dinos run late in the fourth quarter. As per usual, turnovers turned out to be the difference in the game, with the Pronghorns committing 24 of them, in part due to 15 steals by the home team. Lousy shooting percentages slowed the game down with Calgary rocking a measly 32 per cent and Lethbridge at 23 per cent.

As the regular season progresses into the second half, Coach Harle has made it imperative that the ladysaurs continue to execute plays and cut down on critical errors.

“Our emphasis is play smart, play tough,” she said. “We need to cut down on our unforced errors, play with focus at both ends, make every defensive possession matter and then battle for 40 minutes.”

The 9-5 ladysaurs currently sit second in the Central division of the Canada West Conference, trailing only the 11-3 University of Alberta Golden Bears. The Dinos are also ranked sixth in the nation.

The team next faces off against the University of Regina Cougars and the Brandon University. Regina leads the pack in the Great Plains division and matches Calgary’s record of 9-5, meaning the teams’ faceoff will be equal and a matter of who can stay on the ball long enough to win. As long as Calgary remains on its game, Brandon should prove to be an easy victory as they stand in last place of the Great Plains division with an embarrassing 0-14.

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