Coach Gord McCabe admitted wins used to be hard to come by for the Muskie senior girls’ basketball team in years past.
But it’s a different story in the early going this season. The Muskies improved to 2-0 in NorWOSSA play after edging the Kenora Broncos 43-39 in overtime up there yesterday afternoon.
Tied at 37 after regulation time, the Muskies scored the first four points in overtime, then used a ball-control style offence to wear down the Broncos on their home court.
Rookie Sarah Noonan and Siobhan Devlin led the Muskies with 12 points each while Laureen Cousineau netted 10.
But despite the win, McCabe was less than thrilled with his team’s performance yesterday.
“The seniors didn’t play very well at all,” he said afterwards. “Our talent level is above them [Kenora].
“We didn’t give up many steals but our shooting and shot selection was very poor,” he added. “We shot only 22 percent against Dryden [in the season-opener last week] and today we didn’t do much better.”
McCabe said the team sports a plethora of talent—and potential. He also likes their ability to spread the ball around the floor to an arsenal of offensive players.
“We’re headed in the right direction,” he noted. “I see a lot of talent. We just have to have to work that talent.”
McCabe is particularly excited about the talent of his guards this season, which he called the “best in the league,” but feels all five starters match up with just about anybody.
“But we have to play aggressive and play like we’re the best team,” he stressed.
The Muskies did play like the best team on the floor in the third quarter against Kenora yesterday. Trailing 21-19 at the half, the black-and-gold went on a big run to start the second half—and led by as many as seven before the Broncos sliced into that margin with a three-pointer.
From there, the Muskie defence kept Kenora in check, especially in the overtime period when they yielded just two points.
“Any time you can keep a team under 40 points, you’ve done OK. And if we can’t score 40 points, then we shouldn’t win,” McCabe said.
Meanwhile, the Muskie junior girls’ basketball team also triumphed yesterday in Kenora, cruising to a lopsided 45-11 victory to even their NorWOSSA record at 1-1.
After a relatively slow start, the Muskie offence opened up while the defence played stellar, giving up just six points over the final three quarters (including only one in the fourth).
“Our juniors brought the intensity that the seniors should have,” said McCabe. “They played a running game and scored several fast-break points.”
The Muskies, who got baskets from 11 of their 13 players, were led by Trista Barker with 12 points while Dana Ward added nine.
Both squads resume league action next Tuesday (Oct. 5) in Dryden.