Written by John Leong, Handsworth Grad 2011
Game 2 of the ‘No Regrets’ Tournament Spirit Games at Handsworth featured the home team Royals playing the Sturgeon Heights Huskies who made the trip out west from Winnipeg. The girls landed in Vancouver and came straight to their game! After a quick lunch break following the boys’ game, the home gym quickly filled to capacity with standing room only again. Crazy P, still armed with his t-shirt gun, smoke machine and an epic light show ignited the crowd for the starting line-ups.
The Royals won the tip-off and quickly got on the scoreboard from the free throw line. #6 Cayla Sagan opened the scoring for the Huskies with a nice bucket off of an inbound play. Drawing energy from the crowd, the Royals put up a quick 6-2 lead behind a big block from Handsworth’s #24 Julia Strigl that led to a fast break lay-up followed by a three from Strigl on the next possession. At that point the visitors called a time-out. The full court pressure from Sturgeon Heights gave Handsworth some troubles early as it appeared the Royals weren’t used to playing at that pace. Luckily for the Royals, the Huskies struggled facing the 2-3 zone defence from Handsworth. After one quarter the Royals led 13-6.
Shots that weren’t falling for the out-of-town visitors immediately started to fall in the second with #9 Trish Kanu and #1 Britney Blunderfield each knocking down a triple. With 7:20 left the score was all tied up at 15 apiece. Handsworth came back aggressively on the defensive end forcing a turnover that put Royals Guard #11 Sydney Fieldgate-Feenie out in transition. Driving to the rim with players all around her, she managed an acrobatic euro-step finish that got the crowd on its feet! The Huskies hot shooting continued as #1 Britney Blunderfield knocked down another triple followed by #10 Kayla Dau with a triple of her own. At the half the home team Royals were up 27-22.
Following two more electrifying performances from the Handsworth Dance Team, the teams returned to the court ready for the second half. The visiting Huskies put two baskets in to open the half but Handsworth responded with a 4-0 run of their own. Sturgeon Heights was relentless pushing the pace and forcing the Royals into turnovers with their full court pressure, however Handsworth’s ability to get offensive rebounds and second chances had the home team up 35-28 with 3:00 minutes to go in the third quarter. The Royals were being led by #24 Julia Strigl who continued to do a bit of everything whether it be rebounding, defending or scoring. The hot shooting of the Huskies continued though and #6 Cayla Sagan had a euro-step in transition of her own to close the visitors within three to end the third. Royals lead 39-36 entering the fourth.
With the final school bell having gone, most of the students had gone home except for the faithful fans that made their way courtside to accompany Crazy P who was still going strong! A couple of quick buckets from Handsworth were once again answered by Sturgeon Heights #6 Cayla Sagan who hit another three. Down 51-43 with four minutes left, the Huskies called a time-out and drew up a play for #4 Anna Kernaghan who knocked down the open foul-line jumper. #11 Sydney Fieldgate-Feenie of Handsworth took over in the fourth quarter scoring a number of driving lay-ups in transition. With the lead up to 10, Sturgeon Heights Britney Blunderfield continued her attack and hit back-to-back lay-ups to pull the Huskies within six. The Huskies got it within in four but, when it came down to foul shots, Handsworth knocked down their shots and #6 Jenelle McComb knocked down a pair of free throws to ice the game. The Royals defended their home court with a final score of 61-55.
No Regrets: Player of the Game: Handsworth Royals #11 Sydney Fieldgate-Feenie
#11 Sydney Fieldgate-Feenie - 15 Points
#10 Elizabeth Marks-Worling - 12 Points
Sturgeon Heights Huskies:
#4 Anna Kernaghan - 17 Points
#1 Britney Blunderfield - 11 Points