KINGSTON, Ont. (March 4, 2017)- For the second consecutive season, the Windsor Lancers women's basketball team earned the OUA bronze medal at the Critelli Cup Women's Basketball Final Four. Using a dominant 24-point third quarter, the Lancers powered themselves to a 75-64 victory over the Master Marauders at the Athletics and Recreation Centre (ARC).
One night after falling in their OUA semifinal bout against the host Queen's Gaels in a tightly contested match, the Lancers bounced back for a well-earned victory against the Marauders, who had only lost two regular season matches heading into the Critelli Cup Championship weekend. Saturday's game was also a re-match of last year's third place game, where the Lancers also came out on top by a score of 68-58 in the nation's capital.
"The girls said that with it being Caitlyn (Longmuir's) last game they wanted to play for her," said head coach Chantal Valee. "So we made it about us and being on and battling. McMaster gave us a good game. We're happy to finish with a win but it's not where we want to be, absolutely not. Yesterday was our chance and we didn't get it done"
Carly Steer tallied a game-high 20 points for the Lancers, while Cheyanne Roger added a double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Roger, who was named Windsor's player of the match, was 9-of-12 from the free-throw line, while OUA first-team all-star Emily Prevost (Montreal) also added a double-double with 15 points and a game-high 14 rebounds.
On the other side of the court, playing in the final game of her post-secondary career, OUA Player of the Year Danielle Boiagio picked up a team-best 18 points in a losing cause for the Marauders, who will head back to Hamilton empty-handed after coming into the championship weekend as the USports No. 1 ranked squad. Fellow first-team all-star Linnaea Harper added 17 points and 11 rebounds, for the Marauders.
Boaigo (Hamilton), who was also named the conference defensive player of the rear, drained a deep three midway through the quarter, guiding the Marauders to an early 10-6 advantage. Steer (Windsor, Ont.) responded with a quick-three in transition for the Lancers to bring her squad within a point of evening the game. While McMaster shot under 30% through the opening ten minutes, they made good on 12 offensive boards, turning those into eight second-chance points to take a 15-11 lead into the second quarter.
The Lancers began the second by going on a 7-0 run, which was capped off with another basket from range by Steer, to jump ahead 18-15. The Marauders responded with an 8-2 run of their own using a high-tempo transition game that caught Windsor getting back late defensively on a couple of occasions.
Tyra Blizzard (Ottawa, Ont.) hit a corner three to even the game, and Windsor built a four-point lead after fifth-year senior Caitlyn Longmuir (Kingsville, Ont.) sunk another jumper from beyond the arc. The back-and-forth affair continued, however, as the Marauders ended the half with six-straight points to take a 32-30 lead into the break.
Steer led all players with 10 points in the first half, while Harper (Newmarket, Ont.) tallied nine for the Marauders.
The Lancers came out firing in the second half, picking up the first 10 points of the quarter. Steer stepped back and tallied her third three of the game from the corner, and Roger (Etobicoke, Ont.) followed that with a strong move in the post to pick up a basket while taking a foul. The second-team conference all-star hit her free-throw to give the Lancers a 40-32 lead. After Longmuir hit a mid-range jumper in transition to give Windsor its first double-digit lead of the match, the Marauders decided to take timeout.
McMaster didn't hit its first field goal of the second half until the 4:35 mark of the third, while the Lancers picked up their glass game and created problems for the Marauders underneath the basket, earning nine more free-throws in the quarter, of which they converted six. Windsor took a 54-41 lead into the final quarter.
The Marauders showed their resilience in the fourth, going on a 9-0 run that was kick-started by the OUA Player of the Year. After not scoring in the middle two quarters, Boiago picked up a three as part of McMaster's early run in the fourth, and added four more points for the Marauders to bring them within four.
Roger would take over once again, however, picking up eight points in the low post and from the foul-line in spurring the Lancers on a 12-2 run to spread the advantage back into double-digits with just over three minutes remaining. Melissa Ellis (Sarnia, Ont.) would seal the Lancers victory with a deep three at the 2:42 mark, putting the contest well out of reach.