Simon Fraser defeats Saint Martin’s 57–41

After a stunning defeat in the overtime battle against Central Washington on Saturday, Simon Fraser travelled to Washington on Thursday to take on the Saint Martin’s University Saints. They took care of business, playing arguably their best defense of the season, and holding the opponents to only 41 points.

Things did not start ideally for the Clan, however, as they struggled in the first quarter. They were unable to separate themselves from Saint Martin’s, who is dead last in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference (GNAC) with a conference record of 1–14. A layup by Hannah Reynolds to end the quarter had the Saints up 14–13 heading into the second.

Simon Fraser did not start the second quarter convincingly. Their first field goal didn’t come until 5:38, as a Sophie Swant three made the score 18–17 for the home team. Swant also scored the last basket of the half, tying the score at 25 heading into the break after a fastbreak layup. At this point, Ozi Nwabuko was leading the team with six points, as the Clan had one of their lower scoring halves of the season. They shot a measly 31.3% from the field, and only went to the free throw line three times, evidence that their offence was off.

The game was beginning to look a lot like their loss to Central Washington, where an inefficient offence cost them the game. Except this time, they came to play in the second half.

The Clan began the second half on a 12–3 run in which four players scored. They extended the lead to as much as 12 behind a Rachel Fradgley layup, before finishing the quarter with a 42–35 lead. They had three threes in the frame, matching the amount they had in the first half.

In the fourth quarter, Simon Fraser played probably their best defensive quarter of the season. They gave up only three field goals in the entire frame, holding the Saints to only six points in the quarter, and scoreless in the final 3:24. They would eventually go on to win 57–41.  

Point guard Ellen Kett’s passing was on full display, as she assisted four baskets in the final quarter. She finished the game with 12 assists and five steals, which were both game-highs after having 30 points a couple of games before. Kett’s 12th career double-digit assist game set a GNAC conference record in the process. Meg Wilson had a game-high 17 points in the game, including three three-pointers and three steals. Rachel Fradgley played a key role on the inside throughout the game, finishing with 11 points, 10 rebounds, and three blocks.

With this win, Simon Fraser improves to 12–3 in the GNAC (good for third place), and 21–4 overall. This win will hopefully put them back to their winning ways, after a disappointing loss to Central Washington last week ended their previous winning streak.

Next Game: Simon Fraser will make the short trip to Seattle Pacific University, where they will visit the Falcons on Saturday night. This is a big game for the Clan, as they will look to extend their lead over their fourth place opponents, who have a conference record of 9–6.