The Red Deer Polytechnic Queens basketball dropped their home opener Friday night at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre to the St. Mary University Lightning 57-48 after a frustrating fourth quarter.
At halftime of Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) action, both teams were tied at 23 a piece after a slow second quarter. However, in the third quarter, both squads came out with a burst of energy and scored a combined 33 points in the frame.
The Queens went into the fourth quarter with a five-point lead but struggled on both ends of the floor. The lightning rallied for 20 points in the final frame, which was their best quarter of the game offensively and the Queens only managed six points and weren’t able to close out the victory.
Head coach Avery Harrison said he liked his team’s effort but thought they lacked intelligent play late in the game.
“We turned the ball over 32 times there’s no way you’re going to win games doing that,” he said. “Seven minutes to go in the game we’re up seven and we scored two points the rest of the way. You can’t do that. We had chances but good teams capitalize on those opportunities and we didn’t do that.”
Harrison said they also allowed too many points in the fourth quarter and added they have a lot of work to do moving forward.
“With the game on the line, we allowed too many easy points, too many offensive rebounds, but you know they’re a good team and we knew this would be a tough weekend to start the year,” he added.
The Queens leading scorer for the evening provided a spark off the bench with 11 points, 11 rebounds, and two assists. Sandra Garcia-Bernal scored eight points, eight rebounds, and six assists as a starter, meanwhile, Janai Hubert also scored eight points.
Meanwhile, the Kings got blown out in their home debut against the lightning 105-78 at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre.
Despite only being down a single point at halftime, the Kings struggled in the second half and only produced 15 points in the third quarter and nine in the fourth. They turned the ball over 33 times and shot 36 per cent from the field.
Jose Mauro Barrozo Junior was the Kings leading scorer off the bench and produced 23 points and 13 rebounds. Payton Baltzer was right behind Barrozowith 18 points, four assists, and five rebounds.
The Queens and Kings will be back at it on Saturday on the road at St. Mary’s University at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.