Memorial Sea-Hawks guard Meghan Dalton (23) positions herself for a rebound during AUS women's basketball action against the St. Francis Xavier X-Women at the Field House in St. John's on Sunday. Memorial's Vicki Thistle is behind Dalton, with Ashley Stephen of St. FX behind Thistle.Memorial won 65-49 to avenge a 79-72 loss to the X-Women Saturday. It was the Sea-Hawks' first loss of the season. Photo by Gary Hebbard/The Telegram
The difference in Memorial's win Sunday after losing its first game of the season Saturday was simple, according to coach Sea-Hawks Doug Partridge.
"We decided to play today," said Partridge minutes after his team had defeated St. Francis Xavier X-Women 65-49 in Atlantic universities women's basketball at the Field House for a split of the two-game weekend schedule.
"We maybe got a little full of ourselves after wins over Dalhousie and Cape Breton," said Partridge.
"We thought the rest of the teams in the league were going to roll over for Memorial. Young teams tend to get the midset and we didn't realize you don't get things handed to you, you earn them," said Partridge.
MUN (9-1), which lost its first game of the season 79-72 Saturday night in the series opener, went on a 7-0 run Sunday and kept the visitors off the scoreboard for the first four minutes of the game.
Rookie post Alley Forsey, led Memorial with 20 points and seven rebounds.
"The game last (Saturday) night was a big wake up call," said Forsey. "It made us realize what he needed to do today (Sunday) and how we needed to play."
Forsey said the players were smiling and laughing at half time as they held a 37-20 advantage.
"We were happy and confident which is more like us," said Forsey.
Kristen Jones and Elyse Hnatiuk led the X-Women (8-2) with 10 points each. Jacquelyn Richardson, who scored 19 points for St. Francis Saturday, was held to two points Sunday.
X-Women 79, MUN 72 (Saturday)
St. Francis players jumped around like they'd won a championship when the final buzzer sounded Saturday night.
They had reason to celebrate as they outhustled and outplayed the Sea-Hawks on offence and defence for the entire match.
"I'm really proud for our girls to win a big game on the road. It's a big accomplishment to win on the road, no matter where it is," said St. Francis coach Matt Skinn.
"What we've tried to concentrate on all year is pressuring the ball on defence and I think we did a really good job of that. It was a great team effort," said Skinn. "Jacquelyn Richardson stepped up and hit a couple of big shots and Kirsten Jones was rebounding great down the stretch."
Richardson led St. Francis with 19 points.
Vicki Thistle was MUN's leading scorer with 19 points. Kelly Himmelman chipped in with 18 while hitting a remarkable 16-for-16 from the free throw line which is believed to be at least a Sea-Hawks' team record. Himmelman ran into early foul trouble and had just three points in 22 minutes Sunday.
Forsey gave St. FX credit for Saturday's win.
"We didn't play at our pace. We played at their pace which a little crazy and all over the place, not disciplined like us."
Memorial travels to Fredericton to take on UNB Varsity Reds (4-6) next weekend.
Memorial 65, St. Francis 49
Ally Forsey, 20 pts., 7 reb.
Vicki Thistle, 13 pts., 10 reb.
Paula Barker, 8 pts., 4 steals
Brittany Dalton 6 pts., 8 asst., 3 steals
Ericka Gratton 6, 5 reb.
Kristen Jones, 10
Elyse Hnatiuk, 10
St. FX 25.4
St. FX 22
St. FX 35
Free throw shooting
St. FX 16-21
St. Francis 79, MUN 72
Vicki Thistle, 19 pts., 7 reb.
Kelly HImmelmann, 18
Robyn O'Rielly, 11
Meghan Dalton 10
Jacquelyn Richardson, 19
St. FX 42.3
St. FX 14
St. FX 25
Free throw shooting
St. FX 12-18