The Windsor Lancers proved they don't need home-court advantage to win a national women's basketball championship.
Guard Miah-Marie Langlois scored 19 points as the Lancers defended their CIS title with a 69-53 win over the top-ranked UBC Thunderbirds at the University of Calgary's Jack Simpson Gymnasium.
Windsor's first national title came on its home floor in 2011.
The Lancers steamrolled UBC 18-6 in the fourth quarter to break open a close championship game.
“It feels better than the first time,” said Langlois, who was named the tournament's most valuable player.
“I have just a better feeling inside me . . . just to experience the feeling again.”
Langlois scored her 19 points on 7-of-14 shooting in the final. She also grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out six assists.
Langlois's backcourt mate, Bojana Kovacevic, also had a big night and was named to the tournament all-star team. She had 14 points, nine coming in the first-quarter from behind the three-point line.
Jessica Clemencon added 16 points for Windsor
“It was harder (this year) because it was on the road,” said Windsor head coach Chantal Vallee.
“We had to beat a really tough (Calgary) Dinos team (in the semifinal) and tonight UBC played really well. I'm so glad my girls didn't lose their composure and they got it done.
“I'm very proud of my team.”
The Bronze Baby trophy will return to its spot in Vallee's office at St. Denis Centre, the Lancers home gym.
Joining Kovacevic on the all-star squad was UBC guard Kristjana Young, Ottawa Gee-Gee forward Jenna Gilbert and Calgary Dinos' guard Jenna Kaye.
Young led the Thunderbirds with 16 points on Monday. Zara Huntley added 13.
Windsor opened up a 35-22 first-half lead but was held scoreless over the final 2:20 and UBC got to within 35-26 at the break. The Thunderbirds outscored Windsor 17-5 during a seven-minute stretch and had two opportunities to take the lead in the third quarter but couldn't.
Langlois converted a key three-point play with 2:50 left in the third quarter to get Windsor's lead back to four points at 47-43. The quarter ended 51-47 in favour of the Lancers.
The Thunderbirds were looking for the school's seventh national title and fourth under coach Deb Huband. They claimed the CIS crown in 2004 and 2006 and are now 6-2 all-time in the final. Their most recent appearance in the national final came in 2008 when they beat the Regina Rams 67-46.
“Windsor upped the pressure (in the fourth quarter). They have some athletic girls that guard very tightly and aggressively,” Huband said.
“There were a lot of bodies on the floor. I think at times their physicality and athleticism caused us some problems.”
Windsor had a 20-12 lead after the opening quarter, thanks to the shooting of Kovacevic who hit three shots from right in front of the UBC bench.
Earlier, Gilbert scored 19 points and Hannah Sunley-Paisle 16 to lead the Ottawa Gee-Gees past the host Calgary Dinos 79-73 in the bronze medal game.
Jessica Franz scored 19 for the Dinos.
The Regina Rams, who were the top seeds, edged provincial rival Saskatchewan Huskies 64-60 in Monday's fifth place game.
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