Playing in front of a wild home crowd, the University of Regina's women's basketball team pulled away from McGill in the fourth quarter on its way to a 68-53 win over the No. 6-seeded Martlets to advance to the semifinals of the 2013 CIS Championship.
The two teams were never separated by more than six points until past the midway point of the fourth quarter, when the Cougars finally stepped up with a 10-0 run over a span of just under three minutes to turn what had been a one-point advantage into a huge 11-point lead with three minutes to go.
“That game played out exactly how we expected,” Cougars head coach Dave Taylor said. “The scout on McGill was that they were among the most physical teams in the country and they were definitely tough tonight. We did a much better job in the second half of creating offensive tempo, which allowed us to get better looks and to finish.”
Lindsay Ledingham and Michelle Clark both had 15 points to tie for the game high, while Clark led all players with six assists. Brittany Read had the lone double-double of the contest, collecting 10 points and 12 rebounds for the Cougars. Danielle Schmidt also hit double figures for the Cougars, scoring 12 points.
Jennilea Coppola had a big game off the bench for Regina, scoring seven points and adding 10 rebounds in just 16 minutes on the floor. Read and Coppola were a huge reason for the U of R's dominance on the boards, as the Cougars outrebounded McGill by a 46-25 margin in the win.
Dianna Ros led McGill with 13 points and five assists. The Martlets will meet the loser of the Saint Mary's/Fraser Valley quarter-final in the consolation semifinals on Saturday beginning at 3 p.m. (www.cis-sic.tv).
McGill led for almost the entirety of the first half, pushing the lead to six points on two occasions in the second quarter. The Martlets got a triple from Francoise Charest with 11 seconds left in the second quarter to take a 28-23 lead into halftime. McGill shot 39% from the field in the first half, while the Cougars shot at a 28% clip.
It was much of the same in the third, with McGill leading for almost the entire quarter and again building up as much of a six-point lead. The Cougars responded to that six-point deficit with a run of their own, scoring the final seven points of the quarter including a huge Kehlsie Crone triple in transition that put the Cougars up 40-39 heading into the fourth.
McGill grabbed the lead back with another three-pointer from Charest, but Schmidt answered back on the ensuing possession with a triple of her own to put the Cougars into the lead for good.
The Cougars now advance to play St. Mary's University. That game will go Saturday night at the CKHS starting at 7. If you can't be in the gym, Adam Geiger and Lindsey Isaak will have it for you live on Access 7.