By Anna Frey
Despite an intense performance, the AAA Women’s Basketball team lost their first game of the season to Dawson rivals, the Vanier Cheetahs.
Though the score was tied for much of the game, the Cheetahs took control in the last four minutes, managing to score 10 points and bringing the score up to the final tally of 47-61. The first quarter ended at 8-8, after Janis Quintos, guard for the Blues, sustained an eye injury during an attempt on net by the Cheetahs.
Quintos was back on court by the end of the game. The second quarter cured Dawson’s patience with scoring, as they took every chance they got to stuff it into Vanier’s basket. Center Genevieve Gaboriault displayed a rare expert moment of defence as she repeatedly blocked the Cheetahs from reaching the net.
“We definitely need to work on defence,” head coach Trevor Williams commented after the game. “We also need to improve our shooting and boxing out. We have lots of work to do.” The end of the second quarter was the highlight of the game, with the Cheetahs scoring five points in less than a minute, bringing the score back to even with only 21 seconds left in the half.
Dawson gained possession of the ball in the final 10 seconds and Richelle Gregoire-Legault, forward, scored a tight two-pointer right as the buzzer sounded. Both teams lost intensity over halftime, fumbling the ball and missing clear shots. The score remained close through the quarter, but not many points were scored. Six minutes in, Gaboriault scored her second three-pointer of the game after repeated attempts on net by her teammates, making the score 38-35.
With renewed energy in the final seconds of the quarter, Vanier struck hard, scoring two baskets in less than a minute, bringing the score back to a tie at 41-41 by the end of the third. “We played well but we could have done a lot better,” Keshia Lespoir said. “We need to work on getting the ball to the net and our box outs. Other than that I thought we did pretty well.”
The fourth quarter started off well, with Dawson scoring within the first minute of play. It was downhill from there, however, as Vanier doubled their efforts, scoring three baskets in a row. The Lady Blues seemed discouraged and tired, only managing one point in the final four minutes of the game. Vanier finished strong, gaining 14 points on the Blues.
“We expect to do well this season,” Williams commented. “Unfortunately we didn’t play that well today, but we’re looking to win provincials and hopefully get back to nationals.”