The Lightning women are on their way to Kodiak country to battle it out for ACAC hardware. Our women will depart Mar 1st for Lethbridge and begin play early in the afternoon on Thursday Mar 2nd. The Lightning women had an excellent season this year finishing 2nd in the south conference with a 16-5 record and finished the season ranked 15th nationally.
The Lightning women saw strong play from their returning core and senior players this season, along with some solid input from a couple of new comers to the squad. Leading the way this season was Montana Romeril who finished 3rd in the league in scoring at 20 points-per-game and led the league in assists (96) and steals (58). New-comer transfer from MRU Abby Gibb was another standout for the team this year averaging 11 points-per-game, 4 assists and 2 steals. 5th year senior and team captain MJ Ritchie was also a key standout this year with 11 points-per-game, 9.5 rebounds-per-game and 2 steals a game. MJ also achieved a rather large milestone this year amassing an incredible 921 career rebounds and is now the ACAC all-time leading rebounder.
Playoffs will be extremely difficult this season, with the NAIT Ooks playing host to the National tournament this year, the team from Edmonton will earn an automatic bid into the tournament resulting in the ACAC only being able to send one representative to the National.
The Lightning women finished the season with the following stat line.
82PPG/ 44%FG/ 30% 3PT/ 69% FT/ Averaging 18 FT attempts per game/ 37 RPG/ 18 APG/ 17 TOPG/ 12 STLPG/ 3 BLKPG
The likely match-ups are as follows:
Keyano College (Fort McMurray)
65 PPG/ 39% FG/ 32% 3PT/ 65% FT/ 22 FT Attempt PG/ 32 RPG/ 8 APG/ 19 TOPG/ 11 STLPG
Every round of playoffs will have its challenges but if the ladies can stick to the stats and play to the game plan they should have a great opportunity to come out of this game victorious. Keyano attacks the rim well and gets to the free throw line so the Lightning will have to stay out of foul trouble in this game.
Round #2 Semi Finals
73 PPG/ 39.4% FG/ 30% 3PT/ 73% FT/ 18 FT Attempts PG/ 42 RPG/ 12 APG/ 14 TOPG/ 11 STLPG
NAIT is the #1 team in the North Conference and has been nationally ranked for most of the season. This will be quite a battle for the Lightning women. This is also a repeat of last season’s Gold medal match where the Lightning fell to the Ooks. They were able to redeem themselves with a pre-season victory earlier this season and should feel confident about being able to get a positive result from such a strong opponent. The stats have the Lightning with a slight advantage but this will be a must-watch contest.
Round #3 Gold Medal Match
83 PPG/ 44%FG/ 31% 3PT/ 74% FT/ 17 FT Attempts PG/ 40 RPG/ 19 APG/ 14TOPG/ 15 STLPG
If all goes according to plan this is the game the Lightning have their eyes set on. In Coach Shoults’ tenure at St. Mary’s he has yet to be victorious against Lethbridge. But during the final two games of the season the Lightning saw themselves closer than they have ever been. This game won’t be without its difficulties but the women are up for the challenge and eager to show the league just who they are.
The Lightning’s first-round match-up with Keyano will be shown on the TV in the classroom building on Thursday, Mar. 2 at 1 p.m.