By: Stephanie Taylor-Baptiste

The Algonquin Thunder women’s basketball team completed the sweep of their season opening weekend with a 57-37 win against the resurrected Cambrian Golden Shields Nov. 3.

The Golden Shields are back after 20 seasons of not having a women’s team but they were no match for the experienced play of the Thunder. The Thunder were able to force four fouls in the first quarter and get their chance at the foul line, and ending the quarter with a 23-15 lead.

Second-year guard, Jesa Rada made a superb steal in the second quarter with five minutes remaining. She took the ball up court and scored. Later Rada also made a great defensive play when Cambrian’s Kally Watmore stole the ball and went up for a shot. Rada took the foul on the play to save the two points, and Watmore was only able to get one point on the foul line.

The first half ended with a nice layup by second-year guard Abeer Farhat, who made many significant plays throughout the game. The Thunder went into halftime with a solid lead of 32-21.

The Thunder started the second half slow with the team not getting a point in the first three minutes. The Golden Shields capitalized on Algonquin’s lack of momentum, getting seven points early. The Thunder regrouped and caused the Golden Shields to take fouls, which allowed them to keep their lead through the third quarter.

The Thunder continued its domination in the final quarter causing the rookie team to take numerous fouls. Although the amount of foul shots they hit was relatively low, the number of fouls the Golden Shields took was a large part of their downfall and the 20-point deficit that ended the game.

Cambrian coach Bruce Cowtan said he was proud of his team’s effort.

“We had a rocky start,” he said. “But being a new team and having lots of rookies out there, we performed really well.”

Thunder head coach John MacInnis was impressed with the team’s effort in their home opening weekend.

“We played overall pretty well for our first two games of the regular season,” said MacInnis. “There’s always a little bit of nerves coming into the opening weekend. But I thought we executed on the things we needed to do, and the girls on both teams defended well.”

MacInnis said he wants more consistency from his team.

“We have a habit of getting off to a slow start, whether it be the start of the game or the start of the second half. But we took what they gave us once we did that it got a little easier.”

The Thunder’s next game is at home on Nov. 9 at 6 p.m. against St. Lawrence College.