Windsor Lancers forward Jessica Clemencon made her last game on a university basketball court a memorable one.
Clemencon, a four-time CIS all-Canadian, had a team-high 19 points to help the Lancers win their fourth straight CIS women’s basketball title, 71-45 over the Saint Mary’s Huskies on Sunday.
“I was thinking about all the amazing teammates and coaches that I’ve been lucky to have had these past few years,” Clemencon said. “I’m just really excited and really thankful for everything.
“It’s been an amazing five years. I hope we left a legacy.”
Windsor is the first women’s university team to earn four-straight national titles since Laurentian won five-straight banners from 1975-1979.
The Lancers ended their 2013-14 season on a 27-game winning streak, including regular season and playoff games, while extending their post-season run to 15 games dating back to the 2010-11 year.
Windsor guard Korissa Williams scored 14 points and added 12 rebounds for the top-seeded Lancers, while Jocelyn Larocque added 15 points and hit on four of 10 three-point shots.
LaRocque said she’s not counting out the possibility that Windsor could bring home a fifth-straight national title next year.
“Every season it’s a new team and none of our teams can really take credit for what the team did in previous years,” she said. “There’s always motivation for us to go out and perform as well as we possibly can.
“(Head coach) Chantal (Vallee) always does an amazing job recruiting, so we really don’t have to go into a full rebuild most season. We just reload and come back for more.”
Miah-Marie Langlois had eight points, six rebounds and seven assists for the Lancers, and was named the CIS Final 8 Tournament MVP for a historic third time over the last four years.
Like Clemencon, Langlois — the reigning CIS defensive player of the year — won’t be back next season.
“It’s certainly the end of an era for us,” said Vallee. “But both of those girls have been leaders for us both on and off the court and they’ve instilled values in their teammates who will be with us for seasons to come.
“It has been an honour and privilege to coach them for five seasons.”
Vallee praised her team for remaining focused while playing in front of hometown fans.
“We came into the game with good confidence and we were ready and excited,” said the CIS coach of the year. “We knew how to get to the summit and knew we were capable of doing it again. We weren’t about to let this one get away from us.”
“I am very fortunate to be able to coach a team of girls who were champions before and are champions again tonight.”
Justine Colley, the two-time reigning CIS player of the year, ended her five-year career by leading Saint Mary’s with 20 points. Rachelle Coward had eight points and four boards for the AUS champions from Halifax.
The Huskies had their 31-game winning streak snapped, but finished the season with their best-ever result at a CIS Final 8 in just their third national tournament appearance, improving on their bronze-medal finish from 2013.