By LeBron Pryce
Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) Bold women’s basketball team secured a 70-53 win against Lakehead Thunderwolves in their season-opener at the Mattamy Athletic Centre (MAC).
The Bold came out the gates swinging in the first half against the Thunderwolves and never looked back. The blue and gold’s defence and offence ensured they had a grasp on the lead throughout the game. First-year guard Catrina Garvey led the way for TMU with 16 points and five assists.
At tip-off, the hunger for a win was sensed on both sides of the floor. The thirst for victory became even more visible as both teams fought for the first points. The game started evenly matched, with both teams trading buckets, but TMU proved themselves the stronger team very quickly.
Lakehead revealed their offensive skills from the first whistle, which resulted in them leading in the first few moments of the game. TMU, however, combatted this immediately with a full-court press, once again balancing the competition between the two.
Constantly facing TMU’s defensive wall began to create holes in Lakehead’s defence, granting the Bold the opportunity to strike more on the attack. Starting with a layup from Garvey, the rest of the team flowed with energy on both sides of the floor. The Bold increased their lead to 10 points, which they maintained throughout the rest of the opening quarter.
Coming into the following period of play, the Bold refused to let Lakehead gain any traction. TMU stifled the Thunderwolves’ offence with two blocks early in the second and forced Lakehead into committing multiple turnovers.
Later in the frame, the Thunderwolves hit back with two quick layups to close the lead and a tactical timeout to ice the Bold’s momentum. However, after the whistle, it became clear that Lakehead’s efforts were in vain.
The Bold came out firing once more. A block by Haley Fedick turned into a laser of a pass from Garvey to second-year guard Jayme Foreman, who finished with a reverse layup to seal the play—injecting energy into the home crowd.
“Anytime there is a crowd and support, it always gives us a morale boost,” said TMU head coach Carly Clarke.
TMU went into the half-time break with a 37-29 lead. Yet, in the second half, Lakehead started fast on offence, blazing through the defence in an effort to slowly find their way back in the game. An early foul committed by TMU gave the Thunderwolves two successful free throws—further closing the gap—only to be shortened again by a heavily contested layup by fourth-year guard Kaillie Hall.
Both sides traded blows throughout the entire third quarter. Both teams had their defenders working tirelessly to give them the advantage. Most notably, TMU’s Hailey Franco-DeRyck had unmatched hustle the whole game. The first-year forward led the team in blocks and relentlessly dove after loose balls that often led to valuable points for the Bold.
“We want to be defensively disruptive… we want to be bold with that,” said Clarke.
The Bold continued their efforts on both sides of the court into the fourth quarter. TMU displayed a level of stamina which overshadowed Lakehead’s, resulting in an increase in the scoreline to 70-53 and securing TMU the win in the season-opener.
UP NEXT: The Bold face off against the Thunderwolves again on Nov. 4 at the MAC. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m.