Fredericton, NB – In what was dubbed a "Marquee Matchup" certainly started out that way between the Mount Saint Vincent University Mystics and the St. Thomas University Tommies, but the Mystics came out in the end with a 67-46 victory.
With both teams finding themselves in the top 10 of the CCAA rankings (MSVU #3 and STU #9), the stakes were high coming into the game.
The first quarter was everything fans would have imagined it would be; a low scoring, high intensity defensive battle.
The Mystics held a slight advantage, 14-12 after the first quarter and pushed their lead to 26-19 by halftime.
"I thought we came out and played really, really hard. I was happy with our intensity level," said head coach Fred Connors. "I thought we did a good job early of defending, we just had a really hard time scoring the ball. We had a lot of open looks that didn't go down, and we missed 15 free throws. Against a team like that you aren't going to get away with it."
The Tommies shot 40% from the free throw line in the game.
The third quarter had a lot more pace to it, as both teams would nearly match their total from the previous two quarters combined. The Mystics pushed their lead and wouldn't look back on their way to their ACAA leading 9th victory, remaining undefeated on the season.
Bridget Frazee led the way for the Tommies with a game high 18 points, while Tahlia Jones (Fall River, NS) and Kelsey Crocker (St. John's, NL) both had 13 for the Mystics.
The game wasn't the only thing lost for the Tommies as veteran Maddy Owens (Fredericton, NB) and second year player Alana Dowling (Quispamsis, NB) both went down with injuries, and could miss some time.
"I don't know if Maddy is going to be able to go, and now Alana is down too," said Connors about the possibility of both playing Sunday against the University of King's College. "That's two pivotal pieces to both our offense and defense. That's why you take 12 players and run them out there. The timing of Kiandra [MacMullin] coming back is massive for us."
MSVU will hit the road to Saint John for a date with the Seawolves at 5:00pm on Sunday, while the Tommies will host the UKC Blue Devils at 1:00pm the same day.