CANADIAN WOMEN DEFEAT JAPAN TO OPEN FISU GAMES

In the opening game for the Development Women’s National Team (DWNT) in the 2013 FISU Summer Universiade, Lindsey Ledingham led the squad with 19 points en route to a 76-48 victory over Japan. 

The Canadians took an early lead of 12-3 after the first five minutes of play to set the tone for the match. With three minutes left in the first half, Japan cut into the deficit by hitting two consecutive three-pointers to bring the score to 38-18. Ledingham and Dalyce Emmerson both ended the half with 10 points as Canada held a 42-20 lead. 

Japan’s Mio Shinozaki continued to shoot the ball well from beyond the arc through the second half, but Canada came out with intensity to close-out the match. Ledingham sunk a long two-pointer from the corner at the shot clock buzzer to put Canada ahead 65-34 to open the final quarter. Kristjana Young followed up with a euro-step reverse lay-up to build on Canada’s 30-point advantage and add to Canada’s total of 44 points scored in the paint. 

Beyond Ledingham’s 19 points from a perfect 8-for-8 shooting display, Emmerson contributed 12 points and four rebounds for the Red and White. Ajax, Ont. native Taijah Campbell collected a game-high 10 rebounds. Windsor Lancer Korissa Williams showed-off her all-around skill set with five points, eight rebounds, and a game-high of five assists while finishing tied for the match-lead with three steals. A full set of the game’s statistics can be viewed here.

Ledingham appreciated her team’s play, but cautioned there is still work to be done in the competition. "Today we had a good start to the tournament. We came out strong and executed our offence well. We have to get ready for the Ukraine tomorrow as they are a completely different team than Japan and we'll have to make the necessary adjustments."

Head coach Fabian McKenzie echoed the Regina, Sask. forward’s sentiments when asked about his team’s performance. "The athletes played extremely well to start the tournament today against Japan. I am very pleased with their effort at both ends of the floor.  Hopefully our progress continues against a tougher opponent tomorrow."

Canada will continue in the preliminary round tomorrow against the Ukraine at 2:00 a.m. (ET). Ukraine will try to bounce-back following a tournament-opening 84-68 loss to Chinese Taipei.