By Bobby Mihalik
Humber Athletics Sports Information
ETOBICOKE, Ont – Day One of the 2018 OCAA women’s basketball championship at Humber College Athletic Centre in Etobicoke, Ont. began with a quarterfinal matchup between the Seneca Sting (13-4, 2nd East) and the Mohawk Mountaineers (17-3, 3rd West). After overcoming several squandered leads, the Mountaineers came out victorious over the Sting by a score of 71-57 and advanced to the semi-final round.
The Mountaineers struck first and fast to start the match, pulling ahead on the scoreboard courtesy of a Shanien O’Neill three-point shot. Scoring consistently and maintaining their lead throughout the quarter, the Mountaineers would take a 19-13 score into the second.
In the second it was the Sting that landed the first blow, scoring seven straight points and snatching the lead from the Mountaineers. After being held scoreless for almost half of the quarter, a jump shot from O’Neill put the Mountaineers ahead once again. Hanging on and fending off a late Sting rally, the first half ended with the Mountaineers on top, 27-25.
After a solid second quarter, the Sting’s offence quieted to start the third as the Mountaineers took control. Outscoring the Sting 11-2 in the first half of the third, the Mountaineers padded out their lead, only for the Sting to close the gap. Scoring ten straight points to close out the third, the Sting put themselves back in contention, narrowing the Mountaineers’ lead to four, at 45-41.
The Sting dialled up the pressure at the start of the fourth, scoring three quick points to cut the Mountaineers’ lead down to one point. Two free throws from the Sting’s Brianna-Mae Clough tied the game at 46 points apiece before six consecutive Mountaineers points put Mohawk back on top. Though the Sting would come back within a single point again, the Mountaineers would seal their victory with twelve straight points. Finally building a lead the Sting could not erase, the Mountaineers ultimately won the game by a score of 71-57.
The Mountaineers finished the game shooting 32.4 percent (23-of-71) from the field and converting 26.1 percent (6-of-23) of their three-point attempts. The Sting shot 26.3 percent (20-of-76) from the field and made 20 percent (3-of-15) of their three-point shots.
O’Neill, who was named the Player of the Game for Mohawk, finished with 16 points. Hunter Johns and Abby Heron both had 14 points for the Mountaineers, and Stef Hrymak, with 11 points and 14 rebounds, notched a double-double.
Taylor Allicock led the Sting in points with 15, and Shenice Stubbs had 12 points and 15 rebounds for a double-double. Sarah Givens, who was named the Player of the Game for Seneca, finished with 11 points and seven rebounds.
The Mountaineers advance to the semi-final round and will play the winner of Game #2 at 6 p.m. Saturday. The Sting await the loser of Game #2 in the consolation round, with tip-off scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday.