SPARTANS UNDONE BY WESMEN IN FOURTH QUARTER

SPARTANS UNDONE BY WESMEN IN FOURTH QUARTER

WINNIPEG – Trinity Western trailed by just three points going into the fourth quarter, but unbeaten Winnipeg flexed its collective muscles in the final frame as the Wesmen earned a 90-65 win over the Spartans Friday at the Dr. David F. Anderson Gymnasium.

After an impressive opening 30 minutes against a strong Winnipeg side, the Spartans (6-5) were outscored 30-8 in the fourth quarter.

Winnipeg (11-0) had five players scoring in double-digits led by Megan Noonan's 25 points, including six-three pointers. Antoinette Miller finished with 16 points and four assists. Faith Hezekiah added 15 points and seven rebounds. Lena Wenke finished with 11 while Taylor Thorkelsson added 10.

Trinity Western (6-5) was led by Tessa Ratzlaff's (Abbotsford, B.C.) game-high 31 points, nine rebounds. Jessie Brown (Langley, B.C.) finished with 16 points, including four 3-pointers.

"Tonight was a tough one," said Spartans coach Cheryl Jean-Paul. "We were down by three heading into the fourth and then we completely collapsed. We made two really good pushes earlier in the game to get back into it and to even take the lead, but we seem to forget that we've done it before when things get tough and we have the ability to battle through. The adjustments we made at half were good. We contained some of the things that had been hurting us in the first half, but we're still not ready to close out a 40-minute game when it goes back and forth. That's the difference right now between who we are and who we want to be. So these kinds of games either make us tougher and gain resolve or we keep making the same decisions that will finish with the same results.

"I am looking forward to the response tomorrow, not so much in the final score but in the desire to see an objective through to the end."

Both teams came out firing in the opening quarter. A pair of 3-pointers by Brown gave the Spartans an early 8-5 lead. Noonan put the Wesmen on her back, scoring eight points to propel Winnipeg to a 23-14 lead with 1:39 left in the quarter. The Wesmen carried a 28-20 lead into the second quarter.

The Spartans made their move in the second quarter. After Winnipeg opened up a 35-23 lead, the Spartans went on an 11-2 run to cut the Wesmen lead to 37-34, forcing a Winnipeg timeout. The teams exchanged points going into halftime, with Winnipeg taking a 47-42 lead into the break.

Noonan and Ratzlaff each scored 20 points for their respective teams in the opening half.

After the break, the Spartans outscored Winnipeg 15-13 in a low-scoring quarter to cut the Wesmen lead to 60-57 after 30 minutes of play.

Winnipeg put the game out of reach in the fourth quarter. The Wesmen went on a 15-0 run to open up a 75-57 lead. The Wesmen continued their hot second half shooting to close out the 90-65 victory.

The Wesmen connected on 13-of-21 (62%) from the field in the fourth quarter.

Winnipeg and Trinity Western will wrap up their weekend series Saturday night with tip off scheduled for 3 p.m. (PT).

Game Notes: Last year, the Spartans earned back-to-back road wins against Winnipeg…that weekend included a 74-73 TWU win in which Brown hit a buzzer-beating 3-pointer…Winnipeg had a 36-18 edge in points off turnovers.

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