Rams drop third straight to Ottawa
TORONTO – It was unfortunate night for the Ryerson Rams as they dropped their second match of the regular season to the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees by a score of 62-58 on Friday night at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.
However, in contrast to the final result, the Rams seemed to be very much in charge throughout the first half. Making crucial stops defensively, while simultaneously dominating the glass on both ends of the court, the Rams were showing that they were able to slow down one of the OUA’s most prolific teams.
Although the scoreboard showcased the Gee-Gees ahead by a point as the buzzer sounded on the first half, the game could very well have been considered effectively deadlocked throughout the first two quarters. With both teams struggling to connect offensively from the field, it was up to the teams' three-point shooters and post players to make up the deficit in points.
For both teams, the necessity of effective rebounding was apparent, with both Ottawa and Ryerson totalling 24 rebounds throughout the first two quarters, equally distributed between offensive and defensive rebounds.
“Defensively we were really dialed in as a team,” stated head coach Carly Clarke on her team's effort in the first half, adding, “supporting each other, playing together, while moving the ball offensively and creating some good shots.”
The points leaders for Ottawa and Ryerson closely replicated this necessity for low-post, and three-point offensive opportunities. For the Rams, Cara Tiemens (Newmarket, Ont.) led the way with 13 points assisted greatly by fifty-percent shooting from beyond the arc. Tiemens would go on to lead all Rams offensively, with 17 points and 7 rebounds on the evening.
“Cara has been playing at another level lately,” commented Clarke on Tiemens performance, adding, “she asserted herself as a threat on every possession.”
While the first half saw the Rams showcase a consistent playing style, the second half can be summarized as a tale of two very different quarters.
The Rams came out strong in the third quarter, maintaining the same degree of quick offensive ball movement they utilized to close out the first half, while keeping the Gee-Gees consistently under pressure defensively.
Unfortunately, this playing style would seem to taper off towards the end of the quarter, as the Rams committed a large number of turnovers while simultaneously becoming more lackadaisical defensively, with Ottawa running up the scoreboard before the buzzer sounded.
“We lost the subbing a bit, and got a lineup out there that wasn’t quite ready to defend what they were doing,” stated Clarke on the team’s fall off in performance in the third quarter, adding, “whenever we would get a stop, we would commit a turnover and just make sloppy mistakes.”
The Rams threw their best effort forward as they took to the court for the fourth and final quarter of play, but unfortunately it just wasn’t enough, as Ottawa was able to hold them off for the 62-58 victory.
The loss marks the Rams third straight, highlighting the lowest point in their season thus far.
The Rams will be back in action on Saturday night, as they take on the No. 4 Carleton Ravens at the Mattamy Athletic Centre to conclude their Gold Rush Weekend.