The women emerged from the first half up 31-30, and the game turned into a defensive battle in the second half.
TRU built a big lead into the fourth quarter, but went cold in the final frame, allowing the Cascades to battle back. UFV trailed 56-55 with 3:16 left, and Katie Brink made a pair of free throws that ended up being the final points scored in the game, as the Cascades hung on for the 57-56 win.
The final minute saw the Cascades force the Wolfpack to commit a shot clock violation, but Kayli Sartori was charged with an offensive foul. TRU failed to score on their next possession, and the Cascades took the ball with 39 seconds left, but also failed to score. The Wolfpack launched a three with seconds on the clock, but it missed and the Cascades picked up the win.
Brink led the way for the Cascades with a season-high 18 points, while Sartori recorded 14 points, seven rebounds, three assists and three steals. Taylor Claggett added nine points and 10 boards.
The win was a big one for the women, who improve to a record of 10 wins and seven losses, and are now in control of their own destiny. They sit in the third and final playoff spot, and as long as they finish the season stronger than the UBC-O Heat – they are postseason bound.
A strong fourth quarter buoyed the men’s team to an 82-79 win over TRU, but the club nearly stumbled in the game’s final minute.
The men jumped out to a 29-26 lead in the first half, but that lead evaporated in the third quarter. The teams traded leads in the fourth, with UFV ahead 64-60 with 6:41 to go. Just two minutes later, the Wolfpack went up 69-66, but UFV pulled ahead 79-71 with one minute to go.
However, TRU failed to give up, and gave the Cascades a scare, heading to the free throw line down 82-79, with 12 seconds left. The Wolfpack player then missed both free throws, and Kevon Parchment pulled down the rebounds to give the Cascades the win.
Parchment was huge in the win, with 33 points, 14 rebounds and four assists. Vijay Dhillon added 17 points and Nate Brown had 13, while guard Manny Dulay had a solid game with eight points and six assists.
UFV now has a strong hold on second place in the Explorer division, with a record of 11 wins and six losses. One win or a loss from the Heat or the MacEwan Griffins, and the Cascades qualify for the playoffs.
Over at the North Gym, it was a disappointing night for the Cascades men’s and women’s volleyball teams. The women were swept by the Douglas College Royals in three sets (25-19, 25-22 and 25-21), while the men fell in four (12-25, 25-13, 25-22 and 25-13).
The volleyball teams return to the court tomorrow (Saturday) against Douglas at 5 p.m. for the women, and 7 p.m. for the men.
The basketball teams also return to the hardwood tomorrow, and it is senior’s night, with the club’s honouring Parchment and Shayna Cameron for their five years of post-secondary basketball. The women tip-off at 5 p.m., and the men get going at 7 p.m.
Read Wednesday’s print edition of The Abbotsford News for more on all the games.