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Axewomen to defend championship after win over Memorial

Axewomen to defend championship after win over Memorial

HALIFAX, N.S. - Saturday evening at the Scotiabank Centre the Acadia Axewomen topped the Memorial Sea-Hawks 93-77 in the second women's semifinal matchup of the Subway AUS Women's Basketball Championship. 

The Axewomen were led by their AUS first and second team all-stars Haley McDonald (29 points, seven assists, four rebounds, two steals and a block) and Jayda Veinot (22 points, three rebounds, two assists).

McDonald also took home Subway Player of the Game honours in the effort, shooting 8-for-18 from the field, 5-of-9 from three, and getting to the charity stripe for eight makes on 11 attempts.

"I think we are a threat from everywhere. A lot of us can score from all levels including the three point line, mid-range and also under the basket for layups, so I think that is really important that we can do that," noted McDonald when asked about the depth of the team.

Acadia jumped out to an early double-digit lead in the first thanks to Veinot's 10 first-quarter points on 4-for-5 shooting from the field, including 2-of-3 from deep, to go along with two assists.

Acadia's strong start came thanks to their hot shooters, connecting on 68.8% of field goals in the first, while also holding the Sea-Hawks to 37.5% from the field.

Haille Nickerson, the Sea-Hawks' AUS first team all-star and this season's U SPORTS national scoring leader, picked it up in the second quarter, scoring 10 of her 12 first-half points in the frame, but it wasn't enough to cut into Acadia's early lead and the Axewomen led 51-37 at halftime.

Veinot led all players in scoring with 13 points at the break, while McDonald chipped in with 11 of her own. The two combined for 6-of-9 from three-point range in the half.

The Sea-Hawks were able to keep even with the Axewomen for most of the third quarter until the 3:27 minute mark when Acadia used an 8-2 run to close out the quarter, taking a 73-55 lead into the fourth.

The Axewomen continued their hot shooting throughout the fourth, finishing the game 47.9% from the field and 54.5% from three, while holding the Sea-Hawks to 38.2% and 30.8% respectively.

Acadia now moves on to play the UPEI Panthers in Sunday afternoon's championship final at the Scotiabank Centre at 1 p.m.