Lions women bow out at nationals

In a rematch of the provincial women’s basketball championship of a week ago, the third-seeded York Lions lost, 79-66, Sunday, to the fourth-seeded McMaster Marauders in the consolation final at the Canadian Interuniversity Championship in St. John’s, Nfld.

Kim GibbsThe Lions dream of medaling ended on March 9 when the host Memorial Sea-Hawks topped them, 67-57, in front of more than 2,000 fans at the Memorial Field House. The Lions responded with a 72-61 victory over the Laval Rouge et Or in the consolation semifinal, March 10, to set up the rematch with McMaster.

Left: Kim Gibbs

Graduating forward Kim Gibbs was named York’s Player of the Game after finishing with team-highs with 16 points and eight rebounds. With the setback, the Lions finished sixth at the nationals. Gibbs was also named player of the game in the Bill PangosLaval match after recording 12 points, a game-high eight assists and eight steals.

Right: York coach Bill Pangos

“She’s been a workhorse all weekend,” coach Bill Pangos said of Gibbs. “She came here with a mission; to make a statement. To her credit, both offensively and defensively, she left everything on the court. She gave everything we asked of her, physically and emotionally. She did a great job for us, which is why she was recognized as an OUA all-star and OUA East Defensive Player of the Year.”

Lions assistant coach Eric Tiessen also had nothing but praise for his graduating all-star. “She’s just been outstanding. She’s always provided us with great leadership. She came to play, that’s for sure.”

Graduating point guard Elspeth Cheng had a strong final quarter as a Lions player, collecting 11 of her 13 points over the final 10 minutes of play against McMaster. Also playing her final game for York was centre Sarah Brodie. She finished with five points and five rebounds, including a game-high four at the offensive end.

Elspeth Cheng, Emily Van Hoof, Sarah BrodieThe Lions struggled from the floor, shooting only 27 per cent (15-of-55), but they were outstanding from the line (32-of-38).

Right: Cheng, Emily Van Hoof, Brodie

The win for McMaster snapped a two-game, post-season slide against York. A week ago, the Lions claimed their first Ontario championship since the 1981-1982 season with an 87-79 victory. The two teams also met in the consolation semi-final last year, with the Lions eking out a 58-55 victory.

Emily Van Hoof was named York’s MVP in the opening game against Memorial after recording a game-high 21 points on 10-of-15 shooting from the floor. She also pulled down a game-high five offensive boards and seven rebounds in total.

For more information on the Lions weekend in St. John’s, visit the Sport York Web site.

This article was submitted to YFile by Stephen Reid, sport information assistant in York’s School of Kinesiology & Health Science in the Faculty of Health.