In one of the odder games played this season, the uOttawa Gee-Gees found a way to hold on to defeat a tough Ravens team and establish themselves as OUA North division leaders.
A snail-paced offensive start gave way when the Gee-Gees finished off the last four minutes of the opening quarter with a 13-0 run to grab the early lead. The Gee-Gees would continue to attack and take advantage of Ravens’ turnovers and mistakes to stretch their run out to 21-4 outscore them 29-21 by halftime after Carleton came back with a late surge.
The Ravens, a very good rebounding team, were only able to pull down four offensive rebounds in the first half which compounded their inability to score and establish a flow throughout most of the opening half.
Carleton came out as a different team in the second half to draw within three early, but couldn’t entirely rein in the Gee-Gees. However, a solid shooting game in the first half didn’t translate to the second for uOttawa as they weren’t doing themselves any favours, missing free throws and countless easy points in close.
With seven minutes to go Abeer Farhat of Carleton hit a three to tie the game for the first time since five minutes into the first quarter. The Gee-Gees couldn’t get clear by further than three points until 25 seconds remaining in the game when Stephanie MacDonald was fouled and subsequently sunk both free throws.
Farhat and follow starter Lindsay Shotbolt fouled out within a few minutes leaving a hole in the Ravens’ lineup for the final comeback push.
“I was really happy with the effort our undersized posts put in,” said Andy Sparks, Gee-Gees head coach. “We worked really hard on the low post and the high post and I think the pressure we put on those positions was really the difference in the game tonight. They wanted to establish a high-low game and we didn’t let them do that. With the kids we had out, I thought the eight that played really did a great job.” No Raven scored in double-digits on the night, with Ottawa limiting the duo of Shotbolt and Suprunchuk to seven points apiece.
“I love this rivalry. I think I had something to prove. I like to show up in the big games,” said former Raven and current Gee-Gees guard, Krista Van Singerland. She finished with a game-high 16 points. “This is a great step forward. Obviously now we’re top in our division. It’s really about us and not other teams. Us continuing to do what we excel at from here on.”
“Krista stepped up and Kellie Ring stepped up down the stretch,” added Sparks. Overall, we gave up 48 points so the defensive end was pretty good in general. But, we’ve really got to shoot it better than that. The type of team we are, we need to make some shots and it was a bit of struggle.”
The Gee-Gees will get the rest of the weekend off and look ahead to matchups next Friday against Lakehead and Saturday against Guelph both at Montpetit Hall.