(FREDERICTON, NB) The UNB REDS won an all-Atlantic University Sport match-up in the championship game of UNB's 2022 Helen Campbell Memorial Tournament, presented by Stewart-McKelvey, on Sunday afternoon.
Kylee Speedy (Fredericton, NB) came off the REDS bench to score a game-high 26 points in UNB's 89-58 win over the Cape Breton Capers, earning tournament MVP honours.
"From the start, we wanted to win this," she said. "The first thing he (head coach Jeff Speedy) said to us in the locker room was Marley (Curwin) wants to, in her last year, finally win a Helen Campbell, so we said we were going to do it and we never looked back.
"We had confidence in every single game and we never let up and it's a big deal going into the season," added Speedy. "It's a momentum shifter. And to start 3-and-0, especially against a good team in our conference, it makes it even more special."
The REDS started strong, building an early 12-4 lead.
Speedy hit a long three-point shot as UNB went up 16-8, but the Capers pushed back, trimming the REDS lead to just a single point, 20-19, through one quarter of play.
Curwin (Halifax, NS) would get in on the three-point action, draining a shot from distance, before Speedy added another, giving UNB a 33-22 edge.
One possession later, Speedy sunk another three-pointer, intercepted a Capers pass and worked the ball to REDS newcomer Leah Travers (Calgary, AB) who added a three-pointer of her own, pushing UNB's lead to 39-24.
At the half, UNB was up 49-32.
In the third quarter, Speedy continued her strong play, scoring a three and then a two on back-to-back possessions as the REDS extended their lead to 27 points, at 67-40.
UNB took a 70-43 to the fourth quarter and held the Capers off on route to their 31-point win.
"We went in with the mindset that we can beat them," said Curwin. "We just want to get better and better every game, every practice."
Jayda Veinot (Port Williams, NS) scored 15 points, grabbed five rebounds and four steals for the REDS, while Katie McAffee (Lower Knoxford, NB) scored 11 points and grabbed four rebounds. McAffee was named Stewart-McKelvey Player of the Game.
Kiyara Letlow (Toronto, ON ) led the Capers, scoring 21 points and pulling down 18 rebounds before being ejected late in the fourth quarter. Mackenzee Ryan (Glace Bay, NS) added 12 points.
Only two of CBU's seven bench players scored in the game.
Speedy finished the game 9-of-11 from the field and 5-for-5 from three-point range.
"This week was probably the worst week of practices I've had in a long time," she said. "I could not shoot the ball for the life of me. I was able to stay composed all weekend and keep shooting and trusting my shot, and today that paid off."
This is UNB's first Campbell Tournament title since 2015 and the REDS' 5th in the 22-year history of the event.
Up next for the Capers, the UPEI Panthers, in the opener of their own preseason tournament, in Sydney, October 13-15th.
The REDS will travel to Kelowna for the UBCO preseason tournament, October 14-16.
RECAP BY: Andy Campbell/UNB Athletics
PHOTOS BY: Fran Harris/for UNB Athletics