The home games of the regular season drew to close with a couple of wins under the belt of the Ottawa women’s basketball team as they defeated the Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks 68-64. Both teams took to the hoop hard rallying for the lead but in the end, it was Ottawa who came away with a win. The recent take down lifts Ottawa’s record to 15-2 along with a four-game winning streak with just one double-header weekend remaining in regular season play.
Wilfrid Laurier has defeated Ottawa twice in regular season play in the recent two years they faced. The Golden Hawks looked to repeat the past wins as they hit the floor raring to go to lead the first quarter 16-11 with 8-0 run to spur Laurier’s control of the first quarter.
Second quarter play swung the score in favour of the Gee-Gees as guard Julia Soriano dropped a three to turn the deep trail into a one point game. Soriano remained hot-handed finishing the game 5-7 from deep, as part of her 19 points. The pivotal three was all the Gee-Gees needed to hammer back owning the quarter 18-9 with the help of a nice 50 per cent average beyond the arc. The new second quarter surge of energy pushed the Gee-Gees ahead 29-25 at the end of the half.
The Golden Hawks fired back in the third closing in on Ottawa as players took it to the hoop hard and finished put backs eventually tying up the game at 45-45. The Golden Hawks five-foot-four guard, Nicole Morrison stuffed the stat sheet holding the game high of 25 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists, and a block and a steal. Fourth-years, Kaitlyn Schenck and Sarah Dillon lit up the scoreboard as well each putting up 11 points.
The teams went basket for basket for much of the game, but not in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter. The Gee-Gees remained consistent from beyond the arc, hitting 50 per cent in all quarters of the game. Ottawa’s team high scorer and senior, Catherine Traer aided the three-point average hitting two of her own adding to her 22 points and 7 rebounds. Kellie Ring, also a senior for Ottawa, nailed a double-double in tonight’s game with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Ring also finished the game with four assists, a block and a steal.
This final regular season weekend also marks the annual Seniors Night featuring graduating players Krista Van Slinglerland as well as program graduating players Kellie Ring, and Catherine Traer.
Krista Van Slingerland polished off her two final years of eligibility under the Gee-Gees. Though Van Slinglerland started off the season with a concussion she has left a legacy off the court with mental health awareness. Slingerland is co-founder of the Student-Athlete Mental Health Initiative, a nation wide program that sheds light on the challenges many student-athletes face balancing sport and school. She notes, “I honestly never though I’d get a [seniors night]”, she laughs, “The second chance that this team has given has meant so much to me.”
Graduating from her program at the University Ottawa, Catherine Traer contribution to the team is marked as she leads the Gee-Gees scoring as well as being one of the top shot blockers in the country. Traer averages 16.5 points a game as many opponent’s note.
Former junior national team player, Kellie Ring is also graduating from her program. Last season, Ring was awarded CIS Tracy McLeod award for determination, perseverance, and unwavering spirit when faced with in several knee injuries requiring surgery and much time off. Kellie Ring’s leadership will be missed as well as her play on the court as she leads in assists for team.