ABBOTSFORD, B.C. – The injury filled Heat women's team put up a fight against the Cascades on Friday evening at the Envision Financial Athletic Centre, but ultimately fell (78-49).
The Heat were only down by 11 points at the half, but were outscored (25-9) in the third. Despite a solid effort, UBCO was unable to make a comeback.
Senior forward Taylor Claggett set the tone for the Cascades (1-2), racking up a game-high 19 points, and rookies Nikki Cabuco (13 points) and Deanna Tuchscherer (11 points) also stepped up offensively.
The Heat (1-4) were an injury-riddled group, with five players sidelined due to injury including top scorer Jaeli Ibbetson. They were led on Friday by Jordan Korol (15 points) and Tessa Burton (nine points).
"UBCO is really hurting with some injuries right now, and we benefitted from that a little bit, for sure. They played hard, but just missing that many kids is pretty tough." Cascades head coach Al Tuchscherer noted afterward.
The Cascades built a (17-13) lead at the end of the first quarter, then pushed it to double digits in the second as Claggett put on a clinic in the post. The Mission, B.C. product scored eight straight UFV points in one stretch to help her team to a (33-22) lead at the break.
The Cascades opened the third on a (14-2) run, and they were off to the races from there. Point guard Cabuco was a dynamic presence during the game's decisive stretch, and finished 3-for-5 from beyond the arc.
UBCO head coach Bobby Mitchell noted that having so many players sidelined made it "a little bit difficult… But we've got to be able to find a way to compete and be better."
"When you're down 11 and they score those five points, all of a sudden it's 16, and it just took the wind out of our sails and we couldn't get it back."
The two teams clash once again on Saturday evening to wrap up the weekend series.
All action can be watched live on Canada West tv, presented by Co-op.
~ Seyara Campbell, Heat Sports Information, with notes from Dan Kinvig, UFV Athletics