The UBC Okanagan Heat women found the win column for the first time this season, then settled for a split with Mount Royal on the second weekend of the Canada West basketball regular season.
On Thursday night in Calgary, Sarah Allison connected for 16 points to lead the Heat to an 80-73 victory over the Cougars.
UBCO trailed by three at the half, but took over in the second half outscoring Mount Royal 43-33 over the final 20 minutes.
The Heat overcame a strong effort by Cougars guard Alicia Tan who had 22 points, including 15 in the first half.
“We made a point of denying her the middle,” Heat head coach Heather Semeniuk said of limiting the Calgary guard. “We gapped her a bit and wore her down rotating four defenders on her.”
Emily Kanester scored 10 of her 15 points in the first half for the Heat, while Krystal Schouten was clutch in the post and finished with 13 points and six rebounds.
On Friday, the Heat had a chance for the sweep but fell 73-70 to the Cougars.The third quarter was the difference as Mount Royal outscored UBCO 23-13. The Heat rallied with a strong fourth quarter (22-13) but it wasn’t quite enough.
“We should have completed the comeback,” Semeniuk said.
The leading point getter for a second night in a row was Sarah Allison who scored 20.
Tia Sadler came off the bench and was second on the team in scoring with 14 points in just 21 minutes.
The Heat, now 1-3, will host the Victoria Vikes this Friday and Saturday at the UBCO gym.
The UBCO men are still looking for their first win of Canada West season after dropping a pair to Mount Royal.
On Thursday in Calgary, the Heat managed just 11 points in the fourth quarter in falling 88-70 to the Cougars.
Fouls down the stretch turned into a problem for UBC Okanagan as they committed 18 of their 30 indiscretions in the second half, many came late in their attempt to close the gap on Mount Royal.
Fifth-year guard Yassine Ghomari scored a team high 14 points and grabbed eight rebounds as well before fouling out late in the contest.
On Friday, Ghomari came out firing with 27 points but it wasn’t enough as the Cougars hung on 73-70.
He scored the final 11 points for UBCO but the defense could not get the stops on the other end, as huge threes by Kyle Wilson and Deng Awak with a 1:30 put the game away for Mount Royal.
The Heat (0-4) return home this weekend to battle the University of Victoria Friday and Saturday nights.