Photo by Alex D'Addese

Rams draw even in Gold Rush weekend, falling to Ravens

By Christian Ryan

TORONTO - Gold Rush weekend ends on a draw, as the Ryerson Rams fell to the Carleton Ravens 84-61 Saturday night at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.

Carleton entered the MAC as the U SPORTS number one team in Canada, with the Rams sitting tenth after just having beaten ninth overall Ottawa Gee-Gees in overtime. Showing an improvement over their 2018-starting performance - losses to both Carleton and Ottawa - the Rams had been on a hot streak coming into the game, winning four consecutive ahead of Saturday’s matchup.

It was a game of give and take, with the Ravens pulling ahead for a large lead at the half, and the Rams pulling their way back within ten late. Ultimately, the Rams were unable to maintain the offensive momentum to challenge for the win. Despite the gap in the score, the Rams were not backing down.

“Our guys continued to fight,” assistant coach Borko Popic said. “Credit to [Carleton] being able to sustain the runs and stretching it back to a comfortable spot for them. Our guys fought, but in the end it wasn’t enough.”

Behind game-leading scorer Manny Diressa (Toronto, Ont.) were J.V. Mukama (Hamilton, Ont.) and Filip Vujadinovic (Burlington, Ont.), who maintained solid 12 point performances to round out the Rams’ top scorers. Their consistency in difficult situations was key to the various points at which the Rams were able to press the issue late in the game.

“Manny obviously draws a lot of attention, so other guys are going to have opportunities to get open looks,” Popic said of their performances. “They’ve got to be confident enough to take them, and then believe in their abilities to make them. They had good nights, and that’s what we need from them. These are seniors, veterans, and we need them to step up in big games like this.”

The Rams next host the University of Toronto Varsity Blues on Friday, February 2nd at the Mattamy Athletic Centre for the Battle of the 6ix. The match - the second of the year between the two Toronto teams - will decide supremacy in the city for the 2017-18 OUA season.

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