Photo by JEFF STOKOE/Advocate staff-Girls Basketball ---- Hunting Hills Lightning Gabby Spenst blocks the way for Lindsay Thurber Raider Kelsey Lalor during high school girls basketball action at Lindsay Thurber on Tuesday.

Photo by JEFF STOKOE/Advocate staff-Girls Basketball ---- Hunting Hills Lightning Gabby Spenst blocks the way for Lindsay Thurber Raider Kelsey Lalor during high school girls basketball action at Lindsay Thurber on Tuesday.

Raiders race to series opening win over Lightning

The Lindsay Thurber Raiders employed their two greatest weapons while racing to a 71-53 win over the visiting Hunting Hills Lightning in senior high girls basketball playoff action Tuesday. The Raiders played with speed and energy en route to grabbing a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three 4A zone final which continues Thursday at 6 p.m. at Hunting Hills.

The Lindsay Thurber Raiders employed their two greatest weapons while racing to a 71-53 win over the visiting Hunting Hills Lightning in senior high girls basketball playoff action Tuesday.

The Raiders played with speed and energy en route to grabbing a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three 4A zone final which continues Thursday at 6 p.m. at Hunting Hills.

“There’s no quit in these girls. We don’t always play to what our plan is, but the girls never quit and that’s what I love about them,” said Raiders head coach Kathy Lalor.

“Hunting Hills was really good on the boards tonight and we have to do a little better job with that (in Game 2). But the work ethic of these kids is what I love more than anything else. It’s fun to work with these kids.”

Kelsey Lalor led the Raiders with a splendid 36-point performance. Teammate Elizabeth Morneault also hit for double figures, netting 11 points.

The hosts led 36-22 at halftime and extended their lead to 59-34 after three quarters. The Lightning came out strong and started the fourth quarter on a 9-1 run with several of the Raiders starters on the bench.

“But I wouldn’t say that’s the reason (for the Hunting Hills surge),” said Kathy Lalor. “In the second quarter we worked really hard at controlling the boards because in the first quarter I felt that they (Lightning) did a really good job of that.

“That kind of carried over into the third quarter and in the fourth quarter we just let them get on the boards again. So it has to be something that’s on our minds for the next game.”

Nicole Fisher paced the Lightning offence with 18 points, while Brooke Vanhantsaeme scored 10 and Madi Nimmo added nine.

In the end, the Raiders’ fast-break game was too much to handle for their opponents.

“We like to get out and run,” said the Raiders coach. “We worked hard on it this year and running has always helped with our endurance. We don’t get caught standing still too much on defence. We get beat on the boards sometimes but we don’t get caught much defensively.”

The final score, Lalor insisted, was not a good indicator of how the game was played.

“The score sometimes is not indicative of the play and I thought that was a pretty hard fought game,” she said. “We had a couple of girls who shot pretty well tonight and Nicole had a good night for them.

“It was a great game, and again, the score wasn’t indicative of the play. I thought they were a little better on the boards than us and we were a little better speed-wise.”

Lalor isn’t worried about her players looking past the Lightning in Game 2.

“It’s one game and anything can happen,” said the coach. “Our girls know that. They came in here prepared to work hard tonight. In talking to them before the game they basically said to each other that we know what we have to do.”

A third game, if necessary, will be played Friday at Lindsay Thurber. The zone winner will advance to the provincial 4A championship tournament March 19-22 at Edmonton Jasper Place.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta is on pace to administer more than 300,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses per week, according to the provincial government. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
One million COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in Alberta

Alberta hit a milestone in the fight against COVID-19 this week. As… Continue reading

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre’s expansion project is still a high priority, says Alberta Infrastructure Minister Prasad Panda. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Interior work will start this year on Red Deer hospital project, says infrastructure minister

‘We are committed. This is a top priority,’ says Presad Panda

Even with recent restrictions due to rising COVID-19 variant case levels, about 95 per cent of businesses are open in Alberta, said Premier Jason Kenney. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Consistent pandemic policy has helped Alberta, premier says

Alberta fatality rate lower than Canadian average

Richie Laryea of Toronto FC, left, and Jean Meneses of Mexico's Leon battle for the ball during a CONCACAF Champions League soccer match in Leon, Mexico, in Leon, Wednesday, April 7, 2021. Toronto FC hosts Club Leon in the second leg of their Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League round-of-16 tie holding a valuable away goal after a 1-1 draw last week in Mexico. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Mario Armas
Injury-riddled Toronto FC dispatches Club Leon in CONCACAF Champions League play

Injury-riddled Toronto FC dispatches Club Leon in CONCACAF Champions League play

Winnipeg Jets' Dylan DeMelo (2) skates the puck around Ottawa Senators' Thomas Chabot (72) as he holds off Winnipeg Jets' Mason Appleton (22) during first-period NHL action in Ottawa on Wednesday, April 14, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Winnipeg Jets score two third-period goals to secure 3-2 victory over Ottawa Senators

Winnipeg Jets score two third-period goals to secure 3-2 victory over Ottawa Senators

Toronto Raptors forward Chris Boucher (25) shoots over San Antonio Spurs forward Keldon Johnson (3) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, April 14, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Anunoby, Siakam rally Raptors past Spurs 117-112

Anunoby, Siakam rally Raptors past Spurs 117-112

John Furlong pitches a broader B.C. bid for 2030 Winter Games

John Furlong pitches a broader B.C. bid for 2030 Winter Games

New York Yankees starting pitcher Corey Kluber throws against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 14, 2021, in Dunedin, Fla. (AP Photo/Mike Carlson)
Bichette hits 2nd homer in 9th, Blue Jays beat Yankees 5-4

Bichette hits 2nd homer in 9th, Blue Jays beat Yankees 5-4

Oklahoma City Thunder forward Luguentz Dort (5) goes to the basket as Utah Jazz forward Jarrell Brantley (5) defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, April 13, 2021, in Salt Lake City. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Rick Bowmer
Undrafted Montreal native Dort continues to smash “glass ceilings” in NBA

Undrafted Montreal native Dort continues to smash “glass ceilings” in NBA

A man wearing a protective mask to help curb the spread of the coronavirus walks past banners for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo, Wednesday, April 14, 2021, to mark 100 days before the start of the Summer Games. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Eugene Hoshiko
Rings on the Horizon: Tokyo Summer Olympics hit 100 days out marker

Rings on the Horizon: Tokyo Summer Olympics hit 100 days out marker

Lethbridge Police Chief Shahin Mehdizadeh speaks during a news conference in Lethbridge, Alta., on Wednesday, March 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/David Rossiter
‘Right path:’ Lethbridge police release improvement plan in wake of controversies

‘Right path:’ Lethbridge police release improvement plan in wake of controversies

Most Read