A year ago, the UNB Varsity Reds women’s basketball team entered the holiday break with a 3-4 record and went on to finish the year at 5-15.
A year later, things are looking a bit more promising for the team. Following a 70-62 victory at Cape Breton on Friday and an 81-71 loss at St. Francis Xavier on Saturday, UNB enters the break with 5-3 record. Thanks to Friday’s match being a four-point game, the Reds have 12 points and sit second in the Atlantic University Sport standings.
On Friday, UNB hit nearly 50 per cent of their field goal attempts, netting 27 of 56 tries. Nicole LaFleur had a team high 17 points while Laura Kaye and Grace Wade each had 10. Katelyn Mangold had 15 rebounds.
The Capers led 14-13 after the first quarter and were up 34-32 at the half. The two teams stayed close until UNB began to pull away a bit in the final few minutes of the fourth, leading by 10 with 19 seconds remaining. A late jump shot made by Cape Breton made it a 70-62 final.
On Saturday, UNB’s field goal percentage cooled down to 36.4 per cent in an 81-71 loss to the X-Women. Wade led the team with 21 points while Kiley DeLong came off the bench to register 12. Mangold had another strong rebounding game, recording nine.
UNB led 6-0 less than two minutes into the game but StFX stormed back and led 19-13 at the end of the opening quarter. The X-Women outscored the Varsity Reds 16-14 in the second to lead 35-27 at halftime.
The Reds had a big third quarter, posting 25 points, and led 52-51 heading into the fourth. But the X-Women had a big quarter of their own, registering 30 points in the fourth to win the game by a 10-point margin.
Like the men’s basketball team, the women’s team is the only squad in the conference to have played eight games, meaning they’ve scored an AUS high 518 points.
With 11.9 points per game, Wade sits fifth in AUS scoring. Meanwhile, DeLong is hitting 50 per cent of her field goal attempts, which is good for third in the conference.
Only the 6-0 Saint Mary’s Huskies sit ahead of the Varsity Reds in the standings. UNB begins second half AUS play on Jan. 9 with a home game against the Huskies. Before that though, the Reds will travel south for three exhibition games. They’ll play Broward College, Baltimore and North Central Missouri in Miami from Dec. 17-19.