Nicole Betker, University of Saskatchewan
SASKATOON – With a 66-63 win over the reigning national champion University of Saskatchewan Huskies Friday night at the PAC in Saskatoon, the University of Winnipeg Wesmen remain perfect in the Canada West women's basketball season.
Up by one point heading into the final frame at 49-48, Winnipeg fended off the Huskies bid for a comeback in the fourth quarter.
Rookie Libby Epoch hit a three-pointer with eight minutes left in the game to give Saskatchewan its first lead of the game since the first quarter. Trading points on the next few trips up the court, Winnipeg went on a 7-0 run to build a 60-54 cushion with five minutes left in the game. Saskatchewan scored the next four points but couldn't pull closer than two. Epoch hit another three with six seconds left in the game, but the Huskies couldn't complete the comeback.
With the win Winnipeg sits at 3-0 on the season, while Saskatchewan drops to 1-2.
The Wesmen led 16-10 after the first quarter and 30-29 at halftime.
Former Huskie Antoinette Miller led the Wesmen with 26 points and seven rebounds, while Megan Noonan chipped in another nine.
Three Huskies scored double digits in the game. Sascha Lichtenwald led the trio with 17 points and six rebounds, while rookie Summer Masikewich netted 14 and Epoch another 12.
Winnipeg finished the night shooting at 41.7%, while Saskatchewan shot at 34.5%. The Huskies outrebounded the Wesmen at 38-28.
The two teams will battle again Saturday night at the PAC. Tipoff is at 6:15 p.m.