CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. – The UPEI Panthers women’s basketball squad is looking to continue its winning ways after road victories at Dalhousie and Acadia, which at the time was the U Sports top-ranked squad, last weekend.
UPEI (6-6) host the Cape Breton Capers (7-5) for a game today at 6 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. The only team the Panthers have played that they have not beaten is the Capers.
Hannah Brown (18.1) and Alison Keough (16.6) are second and fourth in conference scoring, behind fifth-year Panther forward Kiera Rigby (18.4).
Keough (11) and Brown (10) are second and third, respectively, in the conference in rebounding, trailing only second-year Panthers centre Carolina Del Santo (11.3).
“They’ve got two outstanding bigs in Keough and Brown,” Panthers head coach Greg Gould said. “And it’s not that they don't have good players around them, that’s what makes them so good . . . they do have very good shooters in (MacKenzie) Ryan, (Toni) Bianchini, (Valentina) Primossi and (Madison) Munro. It makes it hard to double down on post players.”
Rebounding has been an issue during the season, but since Christmas the Panthers have gone from being outrebounded by 12 to five. While they are still getting fewer than the competition, they have cut the margin in half.
Gould said his teams are always going to be challenged to get more rebounds, as his philosophy is not to crash the offensive glass in order to defend in transition.
Gould is expecting to have a full lineup available to him tonight, but he noted it’s a tough time of year with travel and with the team having surpassed 80 practices. He said the team has had some shortened, but crisp, pratices this week.
“It’s a very easy time of the year to get both mentally and physically tired, so we’re trying to keep everybody as fresh as we can.”
A look at this weekend’s UPEI Panthers varsity sports schedule.
6 p.m. – Cape Breton at UPEI.
7 p.m. – UPEI at Moncton.
8 p.m. – Cape Breton at UPEI.
1 p.m. – Cape Breton at UPEI.
3 p.m. – Cape Breton at UPEI.