A Tan led the SAIT Trojans women’s basketball team to victory, but it wasn’t the one fans are used to.
Alexa Tan (1st year, Calgary, Business Administration) scored a game-high 28 points, as her Trojans survived a second half scare to beat the visiting Red Deer College Queens 67-62 Friday night in their Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) game at SAIT’s Campus Centre.
“I think I need to get my shoulder checked out, because I fist pumped too many times tonight,” said Trojans assistant coach Cameron Wilkosz, filling in for a suspended head coach Bir Parmar. “That was the most fun I have had in a long time, and I’d do it all again tomorrow.”
The Trojans move to 2-1 on the season, while Red Deer falls to 2-2
Tan is the younger sister of Alicia (4th year, Calgary, Business Administration), who has shined for the Trojans the past two seasons.
The older sister struggled on the night, scoring just six points on 2-for-20 shooting — 0-for-9 from the three-point line.
“When Alicia Tan scores six points in a game and you win, it’s because you had someone step up and the fact that it was another Tan was awesome,” boasted a proud Wilkosz. “To have a first year putting up 28 points on a team that just last week beat one of the best teams in the league (St. Mary’s University) was amazing. . . The maturity she showed was incredible.”
The Trojans led 38-28 at the half, and looked to have the game in control. However, after the break, Red Deer came out on fire defensively while chipping away at the lead. At one point, the Queens held the lead after outscoring SAIT 19-12 in the third.
“With three minutes left in the third, we had only scored one point, but we only allowed nine. We were really happy with the defence at that point,” said Wilkosz. “We stayed in that game with our defence.”
The fourth quarter saw the teams trade leads on numerous occasions. Veteran Stephanie Haynes (5th year, Winnipeg, Man., Respiratory Therapy) also came up big for SAIT, scoring 24 points, while doing all the little things necessary at the end of the ball game to earn the win.
“We are so lucky to have Steph,” Wilkosz stated. “At halftime, I took her aside and told her that this game needed someone to take it over. She got offensive rebounds, she blocked a shot, she took a charge. She did a little bit of everything.”
Excitement aside, Wilkosz’s team has to be riding a huge wave of confidence as they are set to finish their weekend tomorrow night with a road game against the always-tough Olds College Broncos.
“The confidence levels could not be higher right now,” he said.
Red Deer’s Emily White replied with 20 points in the losing effort.