Bisons win first game of the season over Thompson Rivers

Bisons win first game of the season over Thompson Rivers

Written by Gee-ef Nkwonta

WINNIPEG - Following the loss last night, the Bison women's basketball team responded with their first conference win of the 2016-17 season with a 70-53 victory over the Thompson Rivers WolfPack on Saturday, November 12.

With the home win, Manitoba improves to 1-3 while TRU drops to 1-3 in the young Canada West season.

The hosts came out strong in the first quarter forcing errors for Thompson River early on. The first quarter was mostly Manitoba as they held the Wolfpack to 2-17 shooting from the field in the first. Nicole Konieczny carried her momentum from last night leading the Bisons with six points in the first quarter and Emma Thompson added two points and five rebounds to put Manitoba up 14-6 heading into the second quarter.

Thompson River came out strong in the second led by a Shenise Sigsworth three pointer followed by a steal in an attempt to regain momentum of the game. Manitoba did not start shooting well in the second but early fouls helped the home side get points on the board going 5-8 from the free throw line. With Konieczny in some foul trouble, Thompson and Rebecca Potter stepped up contributing 12 points and 10 rebounds between them throughout the quarter. Thompson River finished the quarter strong with a lay up by Shenise Sigsworth followed by a three pointer from Emily Vilac to cut in to the Manitoba lead going into the half. 31-20 Manitoba lead.

Early defensive pressure from TRU helped them force Manitoba to take a couple rushed shots leading to scoring opportunities for Shenise Sigsworth. The Bison's and the Wolfpack traded baskets throughout the third until Manitoba decided to bring some full court pressure as well which led to a couple bad shots for Thompson Rivers and some easy buckets for the Bisons.

"I thought we executed out game plan tonight for 40 minutes which was big. We really focused on the third quarter." said Head Coach Michele Sung when asked how she felt about the game.

A steal leading to a lay up for Konieczny and a 3 pointer from Brittanie Parisen pushed the lead to 40-28 for the Bisons. The WolfPack pushed hard late in the third quarter with a key layup by Chelsea Hoey to cut the deficit to seven points but Manitoba answered back with some physical play from Rebecca Potter leading to a free throw to keep an eight point lead heading into the fourth.

A 7-3 run by TRU cut the deficit to four with eight minutes left in the fourth but a big block toward the fans by Potter and four quick points from Thompson started a Bison run midway through the final quarter. A 3-pointer and layup from Taylor Randall continued the run and big plays from Parisen including an assist and a backdoor layup helped cap the 15-0 for the Bisons late in the game. Chelseay Hoey and Shenise Sigsworth fouled out late in the fourth allowing the Bisons to take a commanding lead late, leading to the first home victory for the Bisons in nearly two years (Nov. 29, 2014).

"I thought we executed our game plan tonight for 40 minutes which was big. We really focused on the third quarter," said Head Coach Michele Sung when asked how she felt about the game. "Our girls play a lot in this gym and they work hard in this gym so it's nice to be able to share that with their family and friends."

Shenise Sigsworth led the way for the WolfPack with 16 points with Emily Vilac close behind with 13 points of her own.

For the Bisons, Nicole Konieczny led the way with 16 points followed by Emma Thompson with 13 points and 13 rebounds.

Next weekend (Nov. 18-19), Manitoba plays at UBC while TRU will be on the road against Alberta.

Point leaders
MB: Nicole Konieczny (16)
TR: Shenise Sigsworth (16)
 
Assist leaders
MB: Brittanie Parisien (5)
TR: Emma Piggin (3), Michelle Bos (3)
 
Rebound leaders
MB: Emma Thompson (13)
TR: Chelsea Hoey (11)