Fourth quarter rally falls just short for women’s basketball at Simon Fraser

BURNABY, BC – Using a big fourth quarter, the Western Oregon University women’s basketball team trailed up to 27 points in the third quarter before soaring in the final 10 minutes. The Wolves came down to under-10 before Simon Fraser claimed the 84-71 Great Northwest Athletic Conference victory on Saturday afternoon inside West Gym.

WOU (4-5, 0-2 GNAC) scored 26 points in the fourth period to reduce what was a 27-point lead to just 10 before Simon Fraser (5-6, 1-1 GNAC) could score. some. points to the right for victory.

Meadow of Aragon had a big game with 17 points, seven rebounds and both a block and an assist. She went 7-9 on the court. Tresai McCarver added 15 points and eight assists, as well as three rebounds and three steals. Madisyn Clark and Kaelin Williams-Kennedy each totaled 11 points each. McCarver and Clark each connected on a pair of three dots. Seven of the nine players who made the trip to Canada scored a point in the game.

“We started off slow, but I’m really proud of the way we reacted and fought, especially in the fourth quarter,” said the head coach. Holli Howard-Carpenter noted. “Simon Fraser really capitalized on our turnovers in the first half and we just gave up too many three.”

Wolves finished with 15 first-half turnovers and Simon Fraser connected 6-12 from a three-point range in the first 20 minutes. Overall for the game, SFU capitalized on points on turnovers with a 31-16 advantage and went 13-29 of three for the game.

WOU got off to a good start scoring the first six points of the game. McCarver opened the scoring at 17 seconds with a layup. Following a layup by Aragon off a nice entrance passage Alexis wright, Amber Winkler hit two from the line for the 6-0 lead. Winkler added three blocks, a team high, in the afternoon with eight points.

Over the next five minutes and more, Simon Fraser had a 14-0 streak to take the lead at 14-6. Winkler and McCarver collected points over the remainder of the first quarter to leave SFU with a 17-9 lead.

Simon Fraser opened the second quarter with an 11-2 score to extend the lead to 28-11. A Williams-Kennedy jumper reduced the deficit to 12 and it would be a tight remainder of the half with SFU edging WOU just two the rest of the way to take a 41-27 lead at the break.

Although he scored 18 points in the third quarter, Simon Fraser controlled play throughout the quarter, passing WOU 28-18 to take a 69-45 lead in the fourth.

Led by 26 with just over a minute into the fourth quarter, WOU began to make a comeback. Winkler converted a layup to help start a 9-0 run. Aragon added two from the line then converted a three-point game before Makenna Gambée hit a layup at 6:17 to narrow the lead to 17 at 71-54.

After reducing the deficit to 13 several times, WOU got even closer when Clark pulled off a layup and two free throws from Williams-Kennedy brought the Wolves down to under 10 at 81-71. There just wasn’t enough time left for WOU to complete the comeback as Simon Fraser closed the scoring in the last minute for the victory.

WOU shot over 50 percent from the field for the second time this season, shooting 25-49 (51), while going 4-12 (33.3) on three and 17-24 (70.8) in the foul line. The 17 free throws made are a peak for the season. Wolves held a 34-28 lead on points in the paint.

Jessica Wisotzki led Simon Fraser with 27 points and four rebounds. Claudia Hart scored 14 points and Jessica Jones, the GNAC preseason player of the year, returned to the roster for the first time this season and scored 12 points. For the game, SFU went 28-64 (43.8) from the field, 13-29 (44.8) from three and 15-21 (71.4) from the foul line.

WOU will now return home to play four consecutive GNAC games at Monmouth starting with Saint Martin’s this Saturday, January 8 at 2 p.m. ET. The Wolves will also play at Alaska Fairbanks on Jan. 11 (5:15 p.m.), Montana State Billings on Jan. 13 (5:15 p.m.) and Seattle Pacific on Jan. 15 (2 p.m.) during the homestand.

“We shot the ball well and had a balanced score which we needed. I can’t wait to have a full squad and a full week of practice before our next game,” added Howard-Carpenter.

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