Wild win at Central

Katie Brickman
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Cyclones hold on to beat Melville

The Central Cyclones will gladly take the victory, but are disappointed in their performance.

Paige Newans from Central pulls in four Melville Cobra defenders as she drives to the net during the Moose Jaw invitational girls basketball tournament at Central on Thursday evening. Times-Herald photo by Katie Brickman

“You are always happy with the win, but there are a lot of things we need to take from this game and work on,” stated Jocelyn Wigmore, head coach for the Cyclones.

It was a wild finish at Central Collegiate on Thursday evening at the Cyclones held on for the 57-55 victory over the Melville Cobras at the Moose Jaw invitational girls basketball tournament.

“We had a great game on Tuesday and then we are a completely different team tonight,” said Wigmore. “We need that consistency of always coming out no matter who we are playing.”

The Cyclones appeared confused on offence and struggled on defence in the opening quarter. The problems continued in the second quarter as their point guards rushed the ball up the court and took ill-advised shots instead of running a system and driving to the net.

“They played aggressive defence on us and they were right up in our face. That definitely makes our guards panic a little bit more, but we need to start using the jab step to get open and create that distance with the defence,” explained Wigmore.

The Cyclones could have opened up this game if they used posts Gabby Lorge, Diana Lumbala and Paige Newans more with crisp passes, but their guards were flustered and struggled to move the ball quickly around the arch in order to get the Cobras moving on defence. When they did get the Cobras moving or double-teaming a player, the Cyclones were most effective.

“We had a huge mismatch with our posts that we didn’t use,” she said. “I think if we had the chance again, it would be a completely different outcome.”

The score was tied at 41-41 at the end of the third quarter as the Cobras kept coming on strong, especially Amanda Lowe and Shania Lowe. They pushed the play for the Cobras and hit some difficult shots.

However, the Cyclones seemed to find their confidence in the fourth quarter and were able to pull away a little bit.

“I think Hayley Henrikson played some really good defence on their No. 13 (Amanda Lowe) and that really got in their heads. We were frustrating them a bit and they were throwing up some shots and with our big posts, we got some key rebounds,” said Wigmore. “I think the defence in the fourth quarter definitely helped us out and that turned into some nice easy buckets for us.”

With 18 seconds left in the game, the Cobras hit a deep three-point shot to come within two points, but Central was able to keep them from scoring again and held on for the win.

The Cyclones weren’t all smiles after this win because they know the task and teams get tougher as they move into Friday and Saturday.

“We have got to play different the rest of the weekend or else we are going to find ourselves in a terrible situation,” said Wigmore. “We have to be more mentally focused than we were today.”

Follow me on Twitter @katiebrickman.

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