The uOttawa Gee-Gees made amends for last season’s playoff lost to the Carleton Ravens and returned the favour on home court Wednesday night, ending the Ravens’ season with a 74-58 victory. uOttawa advances to the OUA quarter-finals to take on the three seed and CIS no. 7 Ryerson Rams on Saturday night in Toronto.
There was much anticipation of tight, low-scoring game in this one but a frantic pace to the first half gave way to a smoother, more controlled final three quarters for the Gee-Gees.
Carleton had the clear edge in the first 15 minutes, coming out with the little bit more jump offensively. But the Gee-Gees took the lead at the five minute mark of the second quarter by creating turnovers and pressuring the ball, allowing them to take more control of the game. A 17-0 run helped Ottawa take a 39-27 lead into the break.
“We had some defensive lapses which really can’t happen on Saturday against Ryerson so we’ll clean that up,” said Kellie Ring who finished with a game-high 20 points and 11 rebounds, scoring nine points in the fourth quarter to help ice it. “We talked about it at halftime and after the first quarter. They were beating us off the dribble and one-on-one. We definitely wanted to take pride in whomever we’re defending and keep them in front of us. I think we definitely did in the second quarter. That’s what helped us be successful in the second quarter.”
The momentum carried into the second half with the run lengthening to 25-3. The Ravens pushed back with a brief run but the Gee-Gees quickly regained their form and kept their distance on the scoreboard.
Gee-Gees had a much easier time creating lanes to the basket in the second half. Ravens needed to do more than tie the third quarter if they wanted to have a chance in the fourth. But the Ravens got within only as many as seven in the fourth.
“Everyone was really solid for us tonight,” said Ottawa head coach Andy Sparks following the game. “We had to just stay down defensively and be patient. There were a lot of times they were pulling back and we were biting on it. We were chasing shooters and jumping in the air. Typically if they’re going sideways, you don’t help. But we were over helping and I think that’s what caused some open shots for them.”
“They were a very good defensive team as they always are,” added Sparks. “But the offensive end wasn’t as big a key as the defensive end. We really locked down a bit after the first quarter. They’ve lost two very key players so they’re not the same team. So give them credit.”
Ravens’ guard Stephanie Carr got free for 19 points in the losing effort and played every minute. The Gee-Gees reduced the number of looks Carleton was able to generate inside to Lindsay and Leblanc but they both finished in double-digits, 15 and 12 respectively. uOttawa really took away dribble penetration by the Carleton guards who had their way in the early going. The majority of the 19 Carleton turnovers came on the drive.
Despite the size disadvantage and Carleton’s rebounding ability, the Gee-Gees won the battle on the glass 36-34 with the way they hustled and fought for loose balls. But now the Gee-Gees prepare to play a different type of team in the OUA quarters.
“Ryerson is completely different from Carleton,” said Sparks. “They’ve been consistently one of the top five teams in the country. They’re the third ranked team in Ontario. So we knew after this one we were going to be in tough all the way along. We played a very close game with Ryerson here. I think we can compete. They’re a guard-oriented team. They push the tempo a lot. We’re going to have to be ready for it.”
Box Score 1 2 3 4 F
Carleton 22 5 18 13 58
uOttawa 18 21 18 17 74