The Quest University Kermodes women’s basketball team wrapped up the first half of its Pacwest conference schedule on a high note, picking up two important wins away from home on Friday and Saturday (Dec. 2 and 3).
Quest beat the Douglas College Royals 69-51 on Friday, grabbing control of the game in the second quarter after a close opening frame.
“We came out against a very rapidly improving Douglas College team who battled hard and kept things close for the first 10 to 15 minutes,” said Quest head coach Mike Woollard. “Then we settled down and took our time and used our size around the basket. The increase in execution allowed us to make easy ones and play set defence, which proved to be the difference.”
Nicola Hitchcock led the way for Quest with one of the more dominant performances by a Kermode in recent memory. Hitchcock picked up 17 points to go along with 17 rebounds and three steals. Cynthia Lau also had a solid game with 12 points, three assists and four steals, while Katrin Sandbichler picked up an impressive four blocks against the Royals.
The Kermodes then traveled to Abbotsford to tangle with the Columbia Bible College (CBC) Bearcats on Saturday. Again, the road proved kind to Quest with the Kermodes pulling out the 87-55 victory. Quest opened a 21-point lead in the first half and cruised to the win.
“Again it was a battle for the first 10 minutes,” Woollard said. “But I felt the play from our bench, especially Maja Smiljic and Hillary Young, really sparked us and allowed us to get out into transition and make plays in the late minutes of the first quarter and into second.
“We came out again in the third quarter and dug in defensively, gathering a number of multiple stop-in-a-row opportunities where we were able to push out into transition and build our lead. After that I felt the girls did a great job controlling the pace of the game and executing on offence.”
Balanced scoring helped the Kermodes, as four players reached double digits and 10 different Quest players hit the score sheet. The team was led by Sandbichler, who filled the stats sheet with 19 points, eight rebounds, three assists, three steals and one block. Smiljic was also key, hitting five of eight from beyond the arc and contributing 17 points, four assists and two steals.
The win put the Kermodes in fourth place in the Pacwest standings, with a record of four wins and two losses. It also wrapped up Pacwest action for Quest until the New Year. The team will next travel to Moses Lake, Wash., for the Big Bend Classic Tournament on Friday and Saturday (Dec. 9 and 10). The Kermodes next home game will take place on Jan. 19, when Capilano comes to town.
For more information on Quest athletics, visit www.questkermodes.ca.