Photo by Valerie Wutti

Rams fall to unbeaten Carleton to open 2018

By Ryan Bacic

OTTAWA, Ont. - It was a hard fought contest for the Ryerson Rams on Friday evening, but unfortunately, it just wasn’t enough as their eight-game winning streak was snapped at the hands of the Carleton Ravens in a 60-53 loss at the Ravens' Nest in Ottawa.

However, in spite of the loss, what cannot be taken away from this contest is that the Rams held the Ravens to their closest match thus far this season – a sign of just how good this Rams squad truly is.

The first half saw the Rams fall just behind a Carleton team that was playing far below expectations on the evening.  Lead in scoring across the first two quarters by senior guard Nicole Gilmore (Hamilton, Ont.) the Ravens played subpar offensively, only mustering a twenty-six percent made field goal percentage on thirty-eight shots, while connecting on only twenty-two percent of shots from beyond the arch.  By contrast, the visiting Rams went thirty-five percent from the field, while making half of their three-point attempts across the first two quarters.

However, what the Ravens lacked offensively in the first half, they made up for on the defensive end.  The combination of Elizabeth LeBlanc (London, Ont.) and Heather Lindsay (Ottawa, Ont.) proved too much for Rams star Sofia Paska (Etobicoke, Ont.) who was only able to connect for four points in the first half.

While the Rams were largely behind the home team for the first half of the action, the final two quarters of play would prove to be nail biters down to the last minute.  Exhibited several times throughout the second half, the Rams played with a more intensified dynamic right at the beginning of the third quarter.  Paska, to her credit, found a way to manage with the relentless Carleton double-team in the post, and added ten points in the second half to finish the night with fourteen.  Additionally, much has to be said about the contributions of freshman guard Marin Scotten (Ottawa, Ont.) who contributed ten points and five rebounds on the night, to give the Rams added assistance in the front court.

However, as the Rams determination to win intensified in the second half, their play grew to become a little more sloppy.  Throwing up far more three-pointers in the second half (fourteen in the second, compared to four in the first), the Rams connected on only twenty-one percent of their shots, while turning the ball over seven times.  As such, the visiting Rams sacrificed key opportunities to secure easier baskets down the stretch, opting instead to lengthen their marginal leads with contested three-pointers.

When it was all said and done, several missed opportunities contributed to the Rams loss on Friday night.  However, with the scare they gave to the presently undefeated Ravens, the stage is set for the ultimate rematch on January 27, at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.

The Rams will be back in action on Saturday, January 6 at 6:00 PM, as they take on the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees to complete their Ottawa road trip.  All of the action can be caught, live, on OUA.tv.

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