MUN struggles after the break on Sunday, allowing comeback by Saint Mary’s for split of season-opening games
Memorial Sea-Hawks’ centre Ally Forsey drives to the net during AUS women’s basketball action against the Saint Mary’s Huskies at the MUN Field House Saturday evening. Memorial won the game, the first of the 2011-12 AUS season for both teams, by an 84-74 score, but lost Sunday’s rematch 76-60. — Photo by Keith Gosse/The Telegram
The Saint Mary’s Huskies held the Memorial Sea-Hawks to 18 second-half points on the way to a 76-60 victory Sunday at the Field House as the team’s split their Atlantic University Sport (AUS) women’s basketball season-opening weekend series.
Memorial started the 2011-12 campaign with an 84-74 victory before a capacity crowd Saturday night.
MUN shot a meager 19 percent in the second half Sunday and finished with 22 turnovers in the game, compared with 10 for the visitors.
“We just didn’t play with focus and concentration the way we have to if we are going to win games,” said Memorial coach Doug Partridge.
“We guarded for the first half yesterday (Saturday) and as a result, we had a 15-point lead at halftime and then, from that point on, we never guarded them again.
“If you don’t play defence, you don’t win. They had 70 points with over eight minutes left in the game. If they’d kept coming, they could have scored 90 points.”
Despite the poor shooting percentage, Partridge said he isn’t concerned in that area.
“You are going to make shots and you are going to miss some shots,” he said. “That’s immaterial. Offence is never a concern for me. I never worry about offence. We’ve got to play D.”
Briefly on the positive side, Partridge said Robyn O’Rielly “had a great weekend. She showed she could stay with (Huskies’ leading scorer Justine Colley) reasonably on defence and she shot the ball well. She did a lot of good things.”
O’Rielly led MUN with 18 points, including five three-pointers Sunday, while Ally Forsey scored 14 and pulled down 10 boards.
Emily Jameson, who was a standout with a team-high 14 points and four assists Saturday night in 24 minutes of floor time was limited to 14 minutes Sunday, producing four points.
Defence was a big part of the difference Sunday, according to SMU coach Scott Munro.
“We gave up 84 points Saturday and we were on pace for the same thing today (Sunday) at the half.
“So,” added Munro, “we challenged the kids at the half and said ‘what’s it going to be, what do you want to stand for this year?’ We buckled down in the second half and we had some players stop up offensively.”
MUN led 42-37 at halftime but slacked off defensively and then couldn’t hit a shot to save their lives.
“We did a much better job of paying attention to their (MUN) shooters today,” added Munro.
“They’ve got some great shooters. They still had a few looks and a lot of nights they might make some, but I thought our defence was better today,” he said.