The OUA North Division leading uOttawa Gee-Gees women’s basketball team completes a four-game set on the road Friday and Saturday, visiting the Waterloo Warriors and Laurier Golden Hawks.
Averaging 82.8 points per game over their first four, the Gee-Gees are just behind CIS no. 1 Windsor in that category nationally.
The shooting game, and particularly the three-point game, has been an asset in the Gee-Gees’ three victories. Ottawa has made 43 shots from beyond the arc, tied for the most in the CIS with Calgary, although they’ve played two more games than the Gee-Gees.
“I think the team is doing a great job of sharing the ball and we have seen big improvements in the last couple of weeks on both ends of the floor, although it is a work in progress,” says head coach Andy Sparks. “We are starting to get healthier and are only missing a couple of players now.”
In the continued absence of forwards Katherine Lemoine and Catherine Traer, the Gee-Gees have needed good guard play and they’ve had it. Krista Van Singerland’s 60 per cent shooting is seventh-best in the country, Jen Stoqua’s 15 three-pointers is the most in the OUA, Steph MacDonald’s 16 points per game leads the team, and sophomore Sarah Besselink has come off the bench to contribute 10 points a game.
Sparks knows there’s no easy nights in the OUA even if they appear to be from the stands. After the Gee-Gees defeated Laurentian by 40 points on Friday, Laurentian turned around and beat Carleton (who knocked uOttawa out of the playoffs last season) the next night.
Waterloo is off to a slow start at 1-3 with losses to Ryerson, Toronto, and Queen’s, and their only victory coming against the York Lions. Waterloo has yet to win at home. They’ve been great on the glass in the defensive end, leading the OUA in defensive rebounds with 32 per game. That could easily be a big factor with the Gee-Gees lack of size on the active roster.
Fourth-year guard Marti Killeen is the Warriors’ only player to average double-digit points per game. She also makes 45 per cent of her shots.
The 3-1 Laurier Golden Hawks will be ready for the Gee-Gees on Saturday. The Hawks are a team who’ve won three in a row going into the weekend, with their only defeat coming against CIS no. 8 Ryerson. That partly gave reason for Sparks to believe Laurier is a team close to the CIS Top Ten.
Laurier is another strong rebounding team who also get in the face of opponents, blocking five shots per game and affecting their shooting to the point of holding them to 31 per cent shooting each game. That’s certainly a key to watch for with the Gee-Gees making heavy use of their own shooting.
Catch all the action from Waterloo and Laurier on OUA.tv starting at 6 p.m. both nights.