Sports

Goin' Bison tippin'

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If one were to compile a list of all the great things to come in fours, one may quickly run into trouble and be forced to end their list. My desk has got four drawers. That's kind of cool I suppose; but I hate the word drawer. So moving forward, that magical number is also the number of wins the Dinos women's basketball team has strung together following a losing streak of much bigger enormity.

"They worked hard to win four in a row," Assistant Coach Claire Mitton insisted. "Something has gotten into them. It's a solid attitude."

The Dinos played with more fortitude than the opposing University of Manitoba Bisons Nov. 18-19, taking both wins from the shaggy beasts. Their new defensive format is also showing its strengths as the Dinos have been shutting their competitors down.

"We've been wearing teams down in the second half with our fitness," explained Head Coach Shawnee Harle. "We're also playing a lot smarter. Our turnovers and unforced errors have dropped dramatically."

On Friday, in what is becoming their typical form, the Dinos let the Bisons stay close during the first half, ending it with the score tied at 45. But in the second, they marched forth, leaving the Bisons in their dust. The final score rests at 83-73.

Tanya Hautala put on her usual show, netting 20 points--a formidable 13 in the second half alone--and grabbing five steals. Michelle Willson, Lindsay Maundrell and Whitney Haswell had 18, 12 and 12 points respectively.

Before Saturday's game, the Dinos decided they would keep the Bisons to 33 points in the first half and 65 over all. Things weren't looking good as the game began with the Dinos falling behind 22-14 in the first quarter. But this time they decided to forgo a half-time tie, hitting almost everything imaginable to forge a 28-6 run and earn a 42-28 half-time lead. Maundrell, Willson and Hautala had accumulated 15, 10 and eight respective points by the halfway marker.

"We picked up our D," Willson explained of the comeback, adding that cars have four wheels and dogs have four legs. Good thinking!

Although the Dinos' lead tapered off slightly, their first-half performance was too much for the Bisons to overcome. Willson, Maundrell and Hautala had 18, 17 and 16 respective points by the end of the 72-60 victory. Haswell piped in with a phosphorescent 12 rebounds, adding 11 points.

Harle informed me of another sweet thing that came in fours: the number of Dinos in double digits both nights.

"And it was two posts and two perimeters," she elaborated. "That's great inside-outside balance."

Don't forget, the Dinos have their last home game before the holiday festivities get underway Fri., Nov. 25 against the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns. The game gets started at 6 p.m. in the Jack Simpson Gymnasium. It's free, so you can afford to go.

"We have to keep with the momentum," Haswell foretold. "We can get a couple of wins this weekend and have a good December."

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