Rams knock off Queen’s

Gaels lose to Ryerson in the quarterfinals

Guard Brittany Moore posted 18 points in the 62-51 loss to the Ryerson Rams.
Guard Brittany Moore posted 18 points in the 62-51 loss to the Ryerson Rams.

The women’s basketball team’s season came to an abrupt end during reading week. The Gaels were ousted in the first round of the playoffs after losing to the Ryerson Rams 62-51 in Toronto.

Guard Brittany Moore said she didn’t feel great about the game.

“That was, throughout the years, not one of our greater performances at all,” she said. “We were hoping to come out with a better showing and I don’t know if it was nerves, but we definitely weren’t prepared for it.”

Moore said she was particularly concerned with turnovers; the Gaels had 21 while the Rams only had 14.

“As far as turning the ball over, it’s not normally what we would have done,” she said.

Head coach Dave Wilson said the Gaels’ early exit was disappointing.

“It sucked,” he said. “We didn’t put our best foot forward in that game. We didn’t play as well as we were capable by any stretch of the imagination and so it’s always difficult to go out where you know you left a lot on the table, that you could have played a lot better.

“Realistically, we only played well in very short spurts and they were short for the course of the game. That part was tough to take.”

Rebounding was a major issue for Queen’s. The Rams out-rebounded the Gaels, earning opportunities that eventually led to free throws. The Gaels managed to outshoot the Rams 63-58, but the Rams made 22 of 35 from the line while the Gaels only made eight of 19. The Gaels didn’t take a free throw in the first half and the 14-point difference in free throws ultimately meant the game.

“We looked like the Toronto Maple Leafs in the ‘70s there,” Wilson said. “We couldn’t get the puck out of our own end. They just kept getting rebound after rebound after rebound. They were taking three and four shots for every shot we were taking … and getting to the foul line because of that.”

The Gaels managed a 31-31 tie for halftime, but a poor third quarter, where the team was outscored 13-4, was too hard to come back from.

“The third quarter was just one of those quarters,” Wilson said. “The ball would not go in the hoop. The worst shooting quarter of 30 years of coaching I’ve had. Lowest number of points I’ve scored in a quarter in 30 years of coaching. It was just one of those things. The ball would not fit in the basket. That just put us in the hole.”

The Gaels could not overcome the deficit and the loss resulted in the third consecutive year without a postseason win. An unfortunate season marked by a remarkable number of injuries was finally over.

“It was a season of disaster, quite frankly,” Wilson said. “It seemed like every other day, we were losing another player to injury and that was tough.”

Queen’s lost four players, wing Christine Wallace, post Jordan Thomas and guards Meaghan MacDougall and Rachel Urosevic, to season-ending injuries this season.

“I haven’t lost four players in almost all my years combined, so to lose them all in one season was just shocking,” Wilson said. “We went from being what we considered to be a very young, deep talent-wise team, to only dressing nine players or eight players in a game. It was a challenging season in that sense.”

With this season finished, the Gaels are focusing on 2011-2012. As the team practices over the summer, they look to heal their injured players and improve their play. With only one player graduating, the team expects 13 players to return, including Moore, this year’s leading scorer.

“We’ve got the injured kids who are trying to get healthy and back on track to back involved in our program,” he said. “Our one-one skills, both on the offensive and defensive side of the ball, need to improve. We need to be able to exert a little more pressure on the defence.”

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