Badgers Hand Western Their 10th Straight Loss
Western Mustangs Women's BasketballJohn Urban
The 2018 portion of the 2018/19 OUA Women’s Basketball season was not kind at all to the Western Mustangs women’s basketball team. Thanks to key injuries to Senior stars Julia Curran and Maddy Horst, they found themselves in the basement of the West Division with a 1-10 record. Picking up their lone victory of the season on October 27th, 2018 on the road in overtime 68-65 against the Laurier Golden Hawks, courtesy of a 27-point evening from Julia Curran.
The Mustangs were hopeful that 2019 would be gentler to them, looking to grab their first home victory of the season Saturday afternoon hosting the (4-7) Brock Badgers at Alumni Hall. Still without the services of Curran or Horst, the Mustangs would rely on their only healthy Senior player left Laura Graham to lead the charge. Despite going 1/4 from 3-point range in the first 10 minutes of play, the Guard from Sudbury, Ontario led all players on the court after the first quarter with 5 points. With support from Freshman Nelli Larjava’s 4 points and Sophomore Debora Kamba’s stellar defence, Western led 13-12 heading into the second quarter.
After shooting 2/9 from downtown and 27.8% from the field as a team, the Badgers woke up after the first quarter break. Going on a 16-3 run to start the second frame, led by a 9-point quarter from Freshman Guard Melissa Tatti who averaged 18.4 points per game coming into the game. As Western collectively shot 3/11, Brock hit 50% of all their shots as a team over the quarter, allowing the visitors to take solid 30-21 at halftime.
The awful second quarter would end up haunting the home team, as the second half was a very competitive ballgame with the Badgers outscoring Western 40-36. The 70-57 win for Brock was largely thanks to two Welland, Ontario natives: Melissa Tatti and Courtney McPherson. Tatti ended the afternoon with the most points on the court with 14, while adding 3 assists and 2 steals, while the fourth year Center Courtney McPherson was the Radio Western player of the game going a perfect 5/5 shooting with 11 points.
In flashes of potential Sophomore Emma Johnson had a 9-point fourth quarter and Junior Jade Codinera grabbed 6 points in 13 minutes of court time for Western. However, late in the fourth quarter, with the game’s outcome well decided, another injury hit the Mustangs as Toronto, Ontario Freshman Jenna Lawrence fell awkwardly and appeared to injure her right ankle. A possible bad omen that 2019 will be a continuation of 2018 for the Western women’s basketball team still looking for their first win at home this season. The 1-11 Mustangs have now given up a league high 880 points, just behind them with 873 points surrendered to their competition are the (4-8) Algoma Thunderbirds, a team they’ll host in back to back home games next Friday and Saturday night.