SWNT OPENS EGIC WITH WIN | Canada Basketball



(Edmonton, AB.) - Quarter one of the first annual EGIC started how Team Canada would have hoped – one possession, one score. Canada’s high energy start pushed them out to a 17-6 lead that forced Team Brazil into the first timeout of the game. Canada used three 3-balls; one apiece from Lizanne Murphy, Courtnay Pilypaitis and Kim Gaucher to boost them to their 21-12 first quarter lead.

"Our performance today was typical of first game. We had some sloppiness on offense but are happy with our performance on the offensive rebounds. We were able to get alot of quality minutes for different people today. We are looking forward to making improvements in our second game of the series tomorrow," said Lisa Thomaidis after the game.

Tamara Tatham and Miranda Ayim, both using their athletic advantage to create second chances and attack the rim, dominated the first five minutes of the second quarter. Canada held a 10-point margin midway through the frame when Brazil mounted a 5-0 run to cut the lead in half. Edmonton native Michelle Plouffe then checked back into the game, made two free throws and a big 3 as the shot clock expired to restore Canada’s double-digit advantage. As the 2nd quarter came to a close Canada sat on top of Brazil 36-22. Leading the way for Team Canada, Michelle Plouffe with seven points and four rebounds. Miranda Ayim helped out with six points and four rebounds of her own.  Courtnay Pilypaitis and Kim Gaucher chipped in with six and five respectively. Leading all scorers was Brazil’s Patricia Ribeiro with nine with teammate Clarissa Santos pitching in six.

Canada opened quarter three on a 5-0 run, pushing the red and white’s lead to 19. Brazil pushed back with a 7-2 run of there out to get back to their 14-point halftime deficit. Switching defenses, Brazil was able to slow team Canada’s attack as both teams went through a 3 minute scoreless drought.  Using it’s inside advantage Canada was able to earn extra possessions on the offensive glass but were unable to capitalize.  Hometown girl Michelle Plouffe was finally able to get the lid off the basket for Team Canada scoring twice in the final 1:15 of the frame, giving Canada a 50-33 lead heading into the 4th.

A beautiful “and-one” finish from Kendel Ross early in the fourth gave Canada its first 20 point lead of the contest, but a rash of fouls on the defensive end allowed Brazil to go on a quick 6-0 run to get the South American squad back to within 15. Once again, local girl Michelle Plouffe sparked the home side with 2 well-earned trips to the free throw line converting all 4 attempts. Canada then coasted to the comfortable 64-43 win.

Leading the way for Team Brazil was Patricia Ribeiro with nine points and three rebounds. Player of the game for gold and green was Clarissa Santos with eight points and six rebounds.

To the delight of the home crowd, Edmonton’s own Michelle Plouffe led Team Canada and all scorers with 16 points, all rebounders with seven boards and received player of the game honours. Courtnay Pilypaitis was the only other double-digit scorer registering 10 points to go along with three assists.

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