McDonald, Claggett lead Cascades past Mariners in exhibition action

The University of the Fraser Valley women’s basketball team beat the Vancouver Island University Mariners 79-62 in exhibition action on Saturday evening at the Envision Athletic Centre.

Third-year guard Kaitlyn McDonald and rookie forward Taylor Claggett were among the standouts for the Cascades. McDonald was absolutely on fire from beyond the arc, going 6-for-7 from downtown en route to a team-high 18 points. Claggett had a huge double-double, notching 13 points and 16 rebounds to spearhead UFV’s dominance on the boards. The hosts out-rebounded the Mariners, a PacWest conference program, by a 51-26 margin.

“We’re relying really heavily on some of these young kids right now, and they’re coming through,” Cascades head coach Al Tuchscherer said, reflecting on another strong outing from Claggett. “That’s kind of cool to see.

“We know Kaitlyn can be a great shooter, and that’s what we’re expecting from her this year – to knock down some shots. I’m sure she’s not going to go 6-for-7 every night, but we’re looking for her to knock down shots. If nobody’s defending her, she’s got to hit . . . so that was good see, for sure.”

Shayna Cameron notched 16 points for UFV, while Kayli Sartori chipped in with 14. Rookie point guard Kate Head did a little bit of everything, posting seven points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals.

Lanae Adams scored a game-high 22 points for VIU, and Sara Simovic also scored in double figures with 14.

The Cascades sealed the win with some strong defence in the fourth quarter, out-scoring the Mariners 17-7 in the frame. Tuchscherer wasn’t thrilled with his team’s defence prior to that point, though.

“For most of the game, we were kind of lost defensively,” he analyzed. “It was nice to finish strong, but the first three quarters – especially the third quarter defensively – we were not where we needed to be. I give full credit to VIU. They came out and played a great game tonight.”

The Cascades host a pair of exhibition games next weekend. The play the PacWest’s Capilano Blues at 6 p.m. on Friday, and the Western Mustangs – a fellow CIS program from London, Ont. – at 6 p.m. on Saturday.

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The University of the Fraser Valley is situated on the unceded traditional territory of the Stó:lō peoples. The Stó:lō have an intrinsic relationship with what they refer to as S’olh Temexw (Our Sacred Land); therefore, we express our gratitude and respect for the honour of living and working in this territory.

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