It wasn’t exactly pretty, but the Gee-Gees women’s basketball team got it done on Saturday night and snapped a two-game losing streak with a 63-57 win over University of Toronto. Ottawa now heads into Christmas with a 5-3 record, tied with rival Carleton for the OUA North division lead. The Gee-Gees get a shot to take sole possession of that division right out of the break when they host the Ravens on January 9th.
Coming off a three-point loss to Ryerson, the Gee-Gees were hungry for a victory.
“I thought we had a good session this morning and I hoped it was going to transfer into the game,” said head coach Andy Sparks. “It looked like we started the game with a pretty good flow, but then probably a mistake in substitution early put us into a position where we lost all our flow. Certainly the attacks - moving and sharing the ball wasn’t great today.”
Stephanie MacDonald had seven of the first 13 points, while Jen Stoqua drained two threes. That made it look like Gee-Gees were ready to roll, building an early 13-2 advantage.
The Gee-Gees benefited from the Varsity Blues only making four shots in the opening quarter. But after going 4-for-5 from beyond the arc in the first quarter, the Gee-Gees were held scoreless for seven minutes. But that made little difference as Toronto continued to shoot poorly and finished the half 8-for-37.
The Blues eventually found a way to score late in the second and got within three at halftime, with the help of the Gee-Gees who scored a season-low six points in the quarter.
Some sloppy plays and fouls to start the second half gave Toronto a brief lead that carried on as the teams continued to trade the lead back-and-forth eight times in the third quarter.
An 8-0 run helped give the Gee-Gees back some control of the game, enabling them to hold out and finish off the Blues.
“I think we’re just going to look at the positives in this one, we battled to the end and found a way to win even though it wasn’t pretty,” said MacDonald, who had a game-high 19 points, despite foul trouble keeping her out for much of the fourth quarter. “We just lost two games in a row, so it was important to leave on the Christmas break with a win.”
Toronto’s leading scorer, Jill Stratton, was held to 1-for-10 shooting and 7 points. Abena Addo was the leading scorer on the day for Toronto who fall to 4-4 on the season. Maddy Baker helped out with 10 points of her own.
“I think it was a positive that Kellie Ring had probably her best game since she’s been back,” added Sparks, about the guard who had 12 points. “We’ve tried, this week, to increase our post touches from our guards. Kellie Ring was a bit of a mismatch for them in the post. She did well to slow it down and got four scores inside.”
Other than that, Ottawa’s attempts to work it into the post for another area of scoring, wasn’t working with any consistency.
“I think we’re playing with our heads a little right now. When that takes place, the flow tends to be not so good. It’s getting a little stalled in people’s hands too. So hopefully we’ll grow from it. We’re consistently inconsistent. We’ll hopefully get a couple of bodies healthy. We have a big tournament at Christmas at Saint Mary’s. Two of the top seven team in the country will be there so it will be a good opportunity to see where our game is at against teams from other provinces. Also, we’ll be getting into the weight room to try and improve our strength because that’s lacking a bit,” finished Sparks.
Box Score 1 2 3 4 F
Toronto 10 12 23 12 57
uOttawa 18 6 21 18 63