Dinos stomp Timberwolves
Erin McIntosh knew she would get a warm reception when she walked out onto the court at the Northern Sport Centre.
There were about 30 family members sitting in the stands cheering every move the 19-year-old Calgary Dinos’ starting guard made as she took on their UNBC Timberwolves in the U Sports Canada West season opener.
The pro-UNBC element of the crowd didn’t like it but McIntosh and the Dinos dictated the proceedings from start to finish, rolling over the T-wolves 80-55.
“This gym is new for me, I hadn’t played here before so it was exciting for me and I’m so grateful my family could come and watch,” said McIntosh.
“For us, (being a starter) isn’t a huge deal because everybody plays a lot, we’re a deep team and it’s just a great thing to be a part of.”
McIntosh’s dad Mike played high school basketball at Prince George College until he left the city in 1985 to move to attend the University of Alberta and she still has plenty of relatives in P.G., who made the third-year Dino feel right at home. She picked up four points, hauled in three rebounds and forced two turnovers.
The Dinos’ three-point shooting was devastating in the first half and they hit nine of 16 from long range in the opening 20 minutes. Five different players got in the act and none were as accurate as Bobbi Jo Colburn.
The second-year guard from Cranbrook was good on four of her five threepoint attempts on her way to a 16-point game.
Brianna Ghali hit for 13 Calgary points while Latvian import Shannon Hatch shot 10 points and had seven rebounds.
The T-wolves lacked cohesiveness in their attacks and all too often faltered when they generated good looks at the net.
Vasiliki Louka, the T-wolves’ six-footthree fourth-year post, got off to a great start with nine points in the first quarter but was held without a point in the next 10 minutes leading into the break. She ended up with a game-high 17 points after a near-perfect 11-for-12 performance from the foul line.
Held in the check in the early going, Maria Mongomo, UNBC’s leading scorer last season, got her shooting act together in the second quarter and fired off nine points before the half ended. The thirdyear native of Spain finished the game with 15 points, but wasn’t up to her usual speedy self.
“They shot very good, it was 56 per cent in the first half and 43 per cent total,” said UNBC head coach Sergey Shchepotkin. “(Mongomo) is fighting with her health, she has knee problems. It was good that she played today. It wasn’t the reason we lost but it was one of the reasons. We don’t have the (healthy) condition we had at the begin- ning of October. It will take awhile to recover.”
The T-wolves finished the first half with 31 points, good enough to be close in most games, but not when you allow 49.
Friday’s game marked the T-wolves’ debut of Abby Gibb, now in her fourth college season, and she shared point guard duties with Emily Holmes. Gibb joined UNBC in the off-season after two years in U Sports with Mount Royal and year in the Alberta college league at St. Mary’s.
“They were definitely hot on the threepoint line and we should be a bit more aggressive on the threes just because they are a three-point shooting team, said Gibb. “If we stick together as a team and play our game we’ll be good for (Saturday’s) game.”
UNBC trailed 71-28 through three quarters. The T-wolves held the Dinos to nine points in the fourth quarter but scored only seven.
“We kind of stepped off the gas a bit, we had our defensive stops but we couldn’t quite keep our offence rolling there,” said McIntosh. ence for the Dinos, accounting for more than half the offence with 38 points.
He helped lead an 18-2 run in the fourth quarter. The T-wolves has plenty to chances to keep pace with the Dinos down the stretch, getting well within range, but missed with their shots.
Andrew Milner was the only other Calgary shooter to reach double figures with 10 points.
Daniel Stark, making his return to the T-wolves after a three-year absence, led UNBC with an 11-point game, while Marcus MacKay finished with 10. Nolan Hanson, coming off a knee injury that forced him to miss the better part of two seasons, contributed five points.
The T-wolves, backed by some steady shooting from Stark, MacKay and James Agyeman, brought the crowd into it early, matching the Dinos step for step in a back-and-forth first quarter. They trailed Calgary by just one point, 18-17, heading into the second quarter.
Diawara, a fourth-year guard from Montreal, showed why he’s one of the most deadly shooters in the conference, setting the tone for Calgary with 19 first-half points and they led 32-26 at the half. He ended up 9-for-15 from the field and was good on 10 of 11 free throws in the game.
The same teams meet again tonight at the NSC. The women’s game starts at 5 p.m. and the men follow at 7.
The T-wolves are on the road at Trinity Western next weekend, then play host to UBC and Regina for doubleheaders the following two weekends.
UNBC Timberwolves forward Maria Mongomo drives hard to the net past University of Calgary Dinos forward Erin McIntosh on Friday night at Northern Sport Centre.