Women’s basketball fights out tight games in the capital

Gaels split weekend against Ravens and Gee-Gees in which both games are decided by two points

Guard Brittany Moore, pictured during the Gaels’ Nov. 7 loss to the McMaster Marauders, is fifth in CIS scoring.
Guard Brittany Moore, pictured during the Gaels’ Nov. 7 loss to the McMaster Marauders, is fifth in CIS scoring.
Journal File Photo

This weekend, the women’s basketball team ventured to Ottawa to take on the Carleton Ravens and University of Ottawa Gee-Gees.

On Friday, the Gaels played the Ravens, ultimately losing a 64-62 nailbiter.

Both teams came out of the gates hard, but the Ravens took a four point lead at the end of the first half.

The Gaels outscored the Ravens by one point each in the third and fourth quarters, but it wasn’t enough to overcome their deficit.

Head coach Dave Wilson said Carleton was a strong opponent.

“They were tough to defend,” he said. “They’ve got such a good mix of what you want in a basketball team. All of their perimeter players are three-point shooters… and their two posts can score inside. Consequently, we had a real problem stopping [them].”

Third-year guard Brittany Moore and fifth-year wing Katie Guthrie both delivered 18 points. Fourth-year post Erin Skippon led the Gaels with five rebounds.

Wilson said the Gaels were experiencing familiar problems.

“We are very much struggling on our boards right now. We’re getting out-rebounded again, which happened at the beginning of the year,” he said. “That’s one of my biggest concerns right now.” On Saturday, the Gaels played another tight game against the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees, winning 66-64.

The game was tight in the first quarter, but the Gaels began to build a lead in the second, finishing the half with a six point advantage.

“I thought we did a good job defensively of not letting their main scorers take as many shots, and forcing their non-scorers to take more of their shots,” Wilson said.

The Gaels took off in the third quarter, finishing the frame with a 13 point edge.

“We were on a good roll, and kept that into the start of the fourth,” said Wilson. “But then a huge shift in momentum. Everything just changed, went the other way.” The Gee-Gees narrowed their deficit to two points, but weren’t able to catch the Gaels.

“Ottawa started to get a little hot, and got a run going that sort of turned us on our heels,” he said. “It took us a while to recover.”

Moore delivered another strong performance, ending the game with 27 points. She is now the fifth-highest scorer in the country. She said her high numbers provides the team with unique opportunities.

“I think teams [defend] certain players that they know are going to score,” he said. “It opens up opportunities for other players and I think the girls on our team are stepping up. ... That’s why we are doing so well this year. Every win is a team win.”

The Gaels are 10-6 on the season, leaving them in striking distance of first place in the OUA East, currently held by the high-flying Ravens.

Wilson said the league is an even playing field.

“We can beat anybody in this league, but the reality is if you don’t bring your best game, then anybody can beat you as well.”

The Gaels open up the ARC’s basketball-hosting days this weekend when they host the Laurentian Lady-Vees on Friday at 6 p.m.

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