On November 10, 2013 the St Laurent Express Cadettes defeated the Longueuil Tornades to claim the Express Cadette Tournament Championship.
Express’ Jael Kabundascored 22 points to lead all scorers in the game. The combination of her and teammate Shameira Plunkett, were a major reason for the success of the Express.
Plunkett’s impact on play inside the paint, contributed 14 points in the win. On the defensive end of the court, she was responsible for cleaning up rebounds, blocking several shots and altering several more.
“We had a lot of [good] defense. That’s why we won”, said Plunkett.
Her ability make full use of her size and strength made life difficult for the Tornades. They were often forced to double team her in order to try and contain her, was a major factor in opening up opportunities for teammates.
“I tried to give the ball to my teammates, because when [double teamed], there’s always an open person”, reflected Plunkett, which created chances for Kabunda, who made full use of the chances that presented themselves.
The Express did manage to jump out to an early 16-8 lead. But the Tornades’ Sandra Mbekou managed a couple of timely buckets of her hefty 16 First Half points. A couple of big plays strung together, kick started the momentum in her team’s favor. Throw in some pesky defending by Point Guard Sorelle Ineza, and before the Half, Longueuil took over the lead, 28-27.
In the Second Half however, the Express found a way to slow things down. This allowed for them to set up plays which revolved around the entry passes to their bigs, using the team’s size to their advantage.
“We tried to use two Posts so that we could get the ball inside because we were taller than the other team.”
Winning this tournament bodes well for Quebec’s newest AAA club. And if this tournament is any indication, look for the Express to make lots of noise when all is said and done at year’s end.