The no. 9 ranked Gee-Gees women’s basketball team (11-2) has shown its ability to remain poised and stage an affront to opponent’s home crowd with an away game record of 5-0 this season. This upcoming away weekend seeks to be no different as they take on the University of McMaster Marauders (10-3) and Brock University Badgers (8-5). After a slippery fate against Carleton this past weekend, Ottawa will hit the road with something to prove.
Ottawa and McMaster met over Christmas break and the difference between a win and a loss was a quick buzz-beater sunk by Kellie Ring to bring the final tally to 63-61 in favour of the Gee-Gees.
Although McMaster held first place rank in CIS ranks to kick off the year, they have sunk to a seventh placed seeding through the ongoing season. While the Marauders have held a reputable record of 10-3 they were met with difficulty among top ranked teams in the CIS. McMaster’s season games blundered against Ryerson (highest no. 5) and Queen’s (highest no.10), though early in the season, leaves a lot of room for an improved roster. A Marauder top scoring threat comes from second year guard, Linnaea Harper, as she holds the fourth highest shooting percentage in the CIS from deep sitting at 47.2 per cent. Notably, Ottawa’s Julia Soriano, contests Harper as she follows closely behind with a shooting percentage of 45.5 percent which charts at sixth place in the country.
Head Coach Andy Sparks notes that McMaster’s roster includes “an excellent starting five with strong guards.” He continues, “It’ll be important to establish our post play.”
Katherine Lemoine’s solid play underneath the net can shake up an opponent’s defence by putting up big numbers and rebounds as shown in big games against teams like Ryerson, when she laid in a double-double.
Interestingly, ranked first in the OUA for both personal fouls and blocks, McMaster reinforces the notion of, “high-risk, high-reward”, echoing the need for a stable post presence underneath.
The Brock University Badgers’ recent losses to top teams have remained close until the end, as they fell short to fifth placed Ryerson by a mere seven points, ultimately, the game could’ve gone either way. Brock sees big numbers put up inside the paint by second year forward, Kira Cornelissen averaging 9.2 points and 8.8 rebounds, reinforcing the need for a strong inside game from Ottawa. On the perimeter, Brock’s top scorer comes from first-year rookie and guard, Melissa Tatti, who buckets 11.7 points per game, 2.8 steals, and 2.7 assists. With four players scoring the majority of the Badgers points per game, a team defensive effort from the Gee-Gees is needed to dwindle Brock’s attacking strengths.
All regular season games for the women, both home and away, are broadcast on OUA.tv tipping off at 6 p.m.