Carolyn Fragale hasn’t spent much time in the two-spot.
If the third quarter of Saturday night’s 70-51 win over the Brandon Bobcats is any indication of how she’ll do if left there, she should pitch a tent and call it home.
Fragale exploded for a dozen points in the third, getting the job done from just about anywhere and everywhere on the Thunderdome court.
The ex-St. Ignatius Falcons star, who spent three seasons at Algoma University before joining the Wolves last season, finished with a game-high 17, her second straight contest in double figures.
Fragale said there was no way she was going to let the Bobcats, down 34-21 at the half, begin to nudge their way back into this one. The 21-year-old started her run with a pair of free throws, buried a three to push the lead to 18, then nailed another long-distance shot and a pair of field goals as Lakehead opened up a 47-26 advantage.
“We talked about yesterday’s game. They came out harder in the third quarter, so our goal was to come out stronger than them. This game was sloppy in the first half, so we tried to pick it up and we did that in the third quarter.”
LU coach Jon Kreiner said having Katie Ulakovic blossom in her third year – she had 11 points on Saturday, after dropping 14 the night before – frees up Fragale for her new role in what will be her final season in a Thunderwolves uniform.
“That allows us to put Carolyn, a four-type of point guard, out there at two, and we need her to score a little more,” Kreiner said.
“What she was able to do was get to the free-throw line. But we need her also to be a shot-maker. She’s a baller and she’s able to create some pretty nifty shots out there, so we need her to do more of that.”
He’d also like to see more of the same from rookies like Jessica deHaan, who scored five points, hauled in eight rebounds and blocked a shot, and Riverview, N.B.’s Gabrielle Robin, who also had eight, including pair of three-pointers.
“Jessica was great both nights. She works hard. They’re all coachable, but she is just the ultimate coachable type player, who will give you every last effort. Gab really showed tonight what she can do. She’s been really hampered with a knee injury she had in her last game of her high school career. But she’s a phenomenal shooter, she’s a very smart player and she’s going to have a great career,” said Kreiner, cautiously optimistic about his team’s progress two games into a 10-game pre-season schedule, knowing he’s got work to do perfecting their defensive shortcomings before the games start to count.
De Haan, a Hammarskjold High Shool grad who gave up the game for two seasons, said she wasn’t sure she wanted to commit to playing at the university level. But, she added, it feels great to be back on the court.
And it showed.
“Last night I was pretty nervous and it was a little weird getting back into it, but I loved it,” she said. “It was really good … After two years I missed it, so I thought I’d get back into it.
“I thought tonight when we moved the ball well, good things came out of it. Last night we moved the ball way better, consistently throughout the game. So tonight we came out with the win, but I feel like the ball movement could have been better.”
Carrera Lamoureux led the Bobcats, who never led once the entire weekend, with a dozen points.
The Wolves are off to a non-conference tournament next weekend in Winnipeg.
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