SENIOR WOMEN DEFEAT PUERTO RICO AT SUPER FOUR TOURNAMENT

The Senior Women’s National Team (SWNT) notched its second win at the Super Four International Tournament with a strong 69-54 victory over Puerto Rico. Canada opened the four-team tournament on Friday with a 65-55 victory over Argentina.

The game began with furious fast-paced action as both teams came ready to play. Neither side gave up much ground to the other squad with shots falling on both ends of the court. Canada emerged from the energetic quarter leading by a 23-19 margin. The pace slowed in the second as the teams shifted their focuses to defence. The SWNT held the opposition to seven points and managed 12 in the period en route to a 35-26 halftime advantage.

The second half opened much like the first – with a flurry of activity. Puerto Rico started strong with a 7-2 run, before Team Canada regained its footing in the match. The period’s back-and-forth exchanges resulted in a 17-17 quarter. The determined Canadians once again showcased their defensive prowess in the fourth. Team Canada held Puerto Rico at bay and would not let them creep closer than nine points for the remainder of the match, while stretching its lead to as many as 16.

The SWNT was led in scoring by East Preston, N.S. product Justine Colley who finished with 13 points. Kia Nurse of Hamilton, Ont. added 11 for the Canadians. Both Colley and Nurse made seven free throws in the victory. As a whole, Team Canada made 24-of-32 free-throw attempts, while Puerto Rico went 14-for-19 from the line. Canada outrebounded the opposition 33-23, led by Beaconsfield, Quebec’s Lizanne Murphy, who finished tied for the game-high with six. The game’s statistics can be viewed here.

Kim Gaucher of Mission, B.C. commented that, “It was a better all-around effort tonight, and we put together more of a complete 40-minute game. We cut down our turnovers from last night and offensively, we were much more patient. Defensively, we need to shore up a few things. We're excited to take-on Brazil on their home-court tomorrow.”

“We did a good job bouncing back from our performance last night,” said head coach Lisa Thomaidis. “It was a good effort, especially on the offensive end. We played with more discipline and took better care of the ball. We played well together and got people involved.”

Team Canada will wrap-up the tournament on Sunday against host-nation Brazil with the game tipping-off at 12:00 p.m. (ET). Brazil opened the tournament with an 80-54 victory over Puerto Rico. The Canadians matched-up against the Brazilian side last month in China with Canada emerging victorious from two hard-fought affairs by scores of 63-46 and 60-54.