A tinkering we will go
HUIEEEYA! Western rookie Cindy Scott delivers a crushing blow to the knee brace of an oncoming Guelph player.
By Ian Ross
In his quest for the perfect game plan that would put the team over the top in its quest for a national championship, Western women's basketball coach Bob Delaney decided to tinker with Canada's No. 1 ranked team and came away with smoke, but definitely no fire.
The first test came Wednesday when the team travelled to Waterloo and defeated the Laurier Golden Hawks 76-53. Before the game, Delaney, in search of his vision, re-aligned the defence and loosened a few bolts on the offence to allow for a more spontaneous system, rather then set plays. Although the team won by a 23-point margin, Delaney was not pleased with the results of his tinkering.
"[The team] seemed to be standing around half the time," Delaney explained. "We really never got into the flow until 34 minutes had elapsed."
"Coach Delaney is trying to get out of the text book and allow us to use our creativity to score hoops," Mustang captain Angela Nobes said of the new style. "Unfortunately we were not focused enough to use that game plan effectively tonight."
The Hawks managed to stay in the game until the last few minutes by taking advantage of several unstable temporary repairs in Western's game plan, including such critical areas as rebounding and passing.
"We managed to get the job done on the boards to shut down Western," Laurier head coach Sue Lindley said. "But it was their depth that gave them the advantage in the end."
On Saturday, the lady hoopsters hosted the Gryphons of Guelph and fought hard for a 75-69 victory. This game was a definite reflection of the Laurier match, as the team once again changed its game plan to a more successful formula.
"Our focus was not so much freelancing as in the Laurier game, instead, we tried to stay with a set offence and rely on veteran experience," Delaney said.
With the swing in focus, fourth-year captain Angela Nobes was allowed to find the open shot, which is more possible in the standard system. As a result, she netted 29 points for the game.
However, with everyone gunning to knock off the best team in the country, Nobes recognizes the scoring needs to be more dispersed.
"When you feel that way you have to shoot it," she said. "But for us to continue our success we need to spread out the scoring better."
It remains unclear if Delaney will continue to tinker as he chases his vision of a perfect game plan. The answer might come tomorrow, when Western heads into a tough match at Alumni Hall against the McMaster Maurders.