Charlottetown, PE - Behind a strong third quarter, in which they outscored their opponent 22-9, the Panthers cruised to a 71-43 win over the StFX X-Women Saturday night.
UPEI's defence was smothering throughout the 10-minute frame, limiting the X-Women to just three made field goals in the third.
"Defensively, I thought we were solid the entire game," said Panthers head coach Greg Gould.
Carolina Del Santo was the team's anchor in the quarter as she filled the stat sheet with eight points, five rebounds and two blocked shots, nearly matching StFX's output.
"One-on-one, we know she can score," Gould said of his rookie centre. "What it does, is it forces the defence to help and when they help it means more open looks for our other players."
Riding the high of their opening night victory, the Panthers jumped to a quick 9-2 start to begin the game. Four out of the five Panther starters scored in the opening quarter with Jenna Mae Ellsworth and Karla Yepez leading the way with four points apiece.
Forward Jamie McCarron led the X-Women with four points of her own, as StFX slowly chipped away at the lead, cutting it to 13-8 by the end of the first.
The X-Women's strong play carried over into the opening minutes of the second, where they trimmed the deficit to as few as two. But UPEI responded with a 12-2 run to extend the lead 27-15, forcing the X-Women to call a timeout. The two-minute breather did little to help as the Panthers maintained their 12-point advantage at halftime, 32-20.
Despite the comfortable lead, UPEI still had some unfinished business to take care of. The Panthers came out of the break with an 11-2 run, widening the gap 43-22. StFX struggled to contain UPEI.
By the end of the third, Del Santo had already recorded her second double-double of the season with 17 points and 10 rebounds.
UPEI's defence was equally good, as they held their opponent to just three made field goals on 27.3 per cent shooting in the quarter.
The Panthers continued their strong play in the fourth, but the damage was already done as UPEI sailed to the comfortable 71-43 win.
The 2-0 Panthers hit the road next where they will take on the 1-0 UNB Varsity Reds. Game day is Nov. 11 at 6 p.m.
The X-Women will play their home opener on Saturday, November 12th when the Memorial Sea-Hawks will be in Antigonish for a 6:00 pm game.
Courtesy Thomas Becker, UPEI Sports Information