Wesmen clamp down; drop Griffins for sixth straight win

Faith Hezekiah had 13 points, seven rebounds and five assists as the Winnipeg Wesmen won their sixth straight game.
Faith Hezekiah had 13 points, seven rebounds and five assists as the Winnipeg Wesmen won their sixth straight game.

WINNIPEG – Double-teamed, triple-teamed, the whole-team-teamed, and Antoinette Miller still found a way to flirt with a triple-double.

Miller finished with 16 points, eight rebounds and seven assists – and added four steals to boot – to help the Winnipeg Wesmen women's basketball team to a 68-56 victory over the MacEwan Griffins Saturday night at the David F. Anderson Gymnasium.

The win was Winnipeg's sixth in a row and helped the Wesmen keep pace among the leaders in the Canada West standings.

"I think she handled it like a tropper," Wesmen head coach Tanya McKay said. "We've had three games now where teams have doubled her and tripled her, and her composure is wow. For her to handle what she is handling blows my mind.

"For her to handle that pressure and help us run our offence, be a pest on defence, and score, and rebound, it's unbelievable what she does."

Miller played 37 minutes and did so while under intense defensive pressure from the Griffins, who threw a double-team at the fifth-year point guard and forced other Wesmen players to beat them.

And that they did.

Robyn Boulanger added 15 points on 5-for-8 shooting from three, Faith Hezekiah added 13 and Skylar Boulanger chipped in nine off the bench for Winnipeg, which improved to 8-4 heading into the holiday break.

"I think one of the things we have finally learned coming through the fall is that we have to make the extra pass, we need to read the defence," McKay said. "When they're doubling or tripling Faith or Ant, we've got to play off that and create spacing, which we did tonight."

The Wesmen led nearly wire to wire, using an 11-3 run in the first quarter to wipe out an early 7-5 deficit. After going into the half up 39-28, the Wesmen turned the tides decidedly in their favour with a 20-8 run over the first eight minutes of the third quarter capped by a Hezekiah three-pointer that gave Winnipeg its biggest lead of the ball game at 59-36.

Kayla Ivicak was the lone Griffins player in double figures, notching 20 points and a game-high 15 rebounds.

Winnipeg shot 8-for-19 from three, and held the Griffins to 35.1 per cent shooting from the field and 18.8% from three.

The Wesmen held MacEwan to an average of 55 points per game in the two-game series, both Winnipeg wins.

"Tonight I thought we had really good stretches where we played off each other," McKay said. "Our focus is our defence creates off our offence and so I was really pleased with big stretches where we were playing well."