Rams knock off No. 5 Lancers to end 2016
TORONTO – The Ryerson Rams women’s basketball team used a gritty, come from behind effort to defeat the No. 5 ranked and previously unbeaten Windsor Lancers 59-55 on Saturday afternoon at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.
Rams guard Kellie Ring (Ottawa, Ont.) poured in 21 points and collected 15 rebounds, five assists and three steals while playing all 40 minutes. Third year forward Sofia Paska (Etobicoke, Ont.) notched another double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds.
In a battle of two of the OUA’s top defences, Ryerson held the Lancers under 60 points for the first time this season which gave the Rams time to mount a comeback. Ryerson scored 22 points in the fourth quarter to erase an eight-point deficit.
The game started well for the Rams who jumped out to an 8-0 lead and held Windsor scoreless for the first four minutes. Ryerson led 16-12 after ten minutes, but Windsor was able to make the quick adjustment.
The Lancers defence forced six Rams turnovers in the second quarter, contained post-touches for Paska, and limited Ryerson to just eight points as the visitors flipped the script to lead 30-24 at the half.
Ryerson made the necessary adjustments in return as the Rams came out in the third quarter and made it a priority to involve Paska as well as fellow forwards Bronwyn Williams (Toronto), Emma Fraser (Toronto), and Savanna Hamilton (Mississauga, Ont.) in the offence.
“We tried to run a couple things offensively to get the ball moving a little bit more in the second half and to make sure that Sof got touches. Even if she’s not scoring a ton, when the ball goes through her it tends to facilitate some good offence,” said Clarke on her adjustments at halftime.
The Rams could only manage to outscore the Lancers by one in the third so the home side headed to the fourth quarter trailing 42-37, but Ryerson was able to gain the momentum needed to sustain the comeback.
With about a minute remaining and the Rams leading by two, the home side was looking for a dagger to seal the win and they found it from Cara Tiemens (Newmarket, Ont.). The third year guard was just 1-for-10 in the game until that point but with 55 seconds to go she connected from three point range to lift the fans at Coca-Cola Court to their feet.
“That was a big thing for Cara, I know everyone was excited for her when she hit that,” said Rams guard C’airah Gabriel-Robinson after the game. “It definitely gave us that momentum…(and) positive energy that we needed.”
Windsor’s Caitlyn Longmuir responded with a desperate, long-range three pointer but Gabriel-Robinson hit two free throws to seal the victory for the Rams.
Ryerson improves to 6-1 on the season and remain tied for first in the OUA East standings while Windsor moves to 7-1 on the year. The Rams will now break for the exam and holiday season before returning to action at home on January 6 against Lakehead.