VIU Mariners player Ally Keir scores a layup during Thursday's game against the Holland Hurricanes at the CCAA championships at the Vancouver Island University gym.

VIU Mariners player Ally Keir scores a layup during Thursday's game against the Holland Hurricanes at the CCAA championships at the Vancouver Island University gym.

M’s battle back, but get beat at nationals

Vancouver Island University's women's basketball team was defeated 67-62 by the Holland Hurricanes on Thursday night at the VIU gym.

The VIU Mariners won’t win a national championship, but not because of any lack of will, or effort, or desire.

Vancouver Island University’s women’s basketball team was defeated 67-62 by the Holland Hurricanes on Thursday night at the VIU gym on the first day of the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association championships.

Trailing by 13 points after three quarters, the Mariners started the fourth on a 13-0 run to tie the game and ignite the crowd.

“I’m extremely proud of them,” said Bill McWhinnie, Mariners coach. “That’s a very, very good team and a superior athletic team to us and they could have blown us out a couple times and we wore back and the girls were relentless and they didn’t give up.”

The M’s never led, but tied the score five times before falling back in the last minute and a half. Holland was able to hit a few more jump shots than VIU in the final moments.

“The girls, they don’t quit and that’s the biggest compliment I can give them,” McWhinnie said.

Jenna Carver was the player of the game for VIU, scoring 17 points on 8-of-12 shooting and grabbing 11 rebounds. Sienna Pollard scored a game-high 22 points, Amanda Tapia had 10 and Jamie MacFarlane had nine points and nine boards.

Marvia Dean was player of the game for Holland with 19 points and 13 rebounds.

Just minutes after the final buzzer, the Mariners already understood that there was much more that happened at the gym that night than the final score of the basketball game.

“Their heads are high, they’re smiling,” the coach said. “They know they played a hell of a basketball game.”

GAME ON … VIU plays the Quest Kermodes on Friday (March 20) at 3 p.m. at the VIU gym. For other scores and schedule information from nationals, please click here.

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Nanaimo News Bulletin