OUA Women's Basketball Roundup (Feb. 12)

Photo by Martin Bazyl
Photo by Martin Bazyl

February 7, 2018

Ryerson 75 York 79

Chante Clarke had a career day to lead the York University Lions women's basketball team to a huge win over the Ryerson Rams by a score of 79-75 in the second annual School Day Game at the Tait McKenzie Centre on Wednesday afternoon.
With the two teams tied in the OUA East standings heading into the content, and home court potentially on the line in a first-round playoff match-up, Clarke put up 23 points and added four rebounds, three of them on the offensive glass, in the big victory. The Lions now move two points clear of the Rams with an 11-9 record to hold down fourth place, while the Rams, losers of six straight, sit fifth with a 10-10 mark. The Lions also hold the tiebreaker between the two teams after winning both head-to-head meetings.
The Lions had a strong opening quarter and held a seven-point lead after 10 minutes of play, but the Rams turned the tables in the second and pulled ahead by five points with just over one minute remaining. However, the Lions closed the frame with four straight points and the Rams led 41-40 at the half.
After the Rams built up a six-point lead with 2:42 remaining in the third quarter, the Lions went on a thrilling 14-0 run to take an eight-point advantage into the final frame.
The back and forth affair saw the Rams go on their own run in the fourth, and with 40 seconds left the score was tied 75-75. The hero for the Lions was rookie Lauren Golding, who sank her only three-pointer of the day for a 78-75 advantage. Some solid defence held the Rams off the board after their frantic attempt to tie it again, and the Lions held on for the win.
Golding finished with nine points and 10 rebounds, while Lindsay Shotbolt put up another double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds, as well as five assists, four steals and one block. Katrina Collins-Samuels also put in 10 points and added five rebounds, three assists and one steal.
Ryerson's dominant forward, Sofia Paska, led all players with 30 points and 10 rebounds, including going a perfect 14-of-14 from the free throw line.

Source: yorkulions.ca



Western 65 Laurier 48

WATERLOO, Ont. - Third-year guard Maddy Horstpoured in a game-high 22 points to go along with four rebounds and a pair of steals to help lead the Western Mustangs to a 65-48 victory over the Laurier Golden Hawks on Wednesday evening at the PAC Gym at the University of Waterloo.

With the win, the Mustangs move into third place with a 12-9 record alongside the Lakehead Thunderwolves. The Golden Hawks loss will drop them to a 10-11 record on the season as they remain tied for fifth with the Guelph Gryphons.

Two other Mustangs scored in double figures for the purple and white, as fifth-year guard Mackenzie Puklicz dropped 18 points, eight rebounds, and an incredible five steals on the night to lead the defence while Julia Curran added 10 points and 11 rebounds in a double-double performance.

Nicole Morrison led the way for the Golden Hawks in the loss, as she put up a team-high 13 points on the night, inching closer and closer to Laurier's total points record in her fifth and final year with the program.

Western's defence was incredible to begin the game, as the Mustangs seemed to deny the Laurier offence with ease, forcing shot clock violations while converting well on the other end of the floor, starting the game on a 7-0 run. Despite the strong start for the purple and white, the threes would quickly begin to fall for the Golden Hawks midway through the frame led by the veteran guard Morrison. However, consistent scoring effort from Puklicz would keep the Mustangs lead alive. Despite the improved offence from Laurier, Puklicz's 10 first-quarter points would prove to be enough to give the purple and white a 16-10 lead heading into the second quarter.

The second quarter was a different story for Western to begin the frame, as Laurier began to exploit the Mustangs in the paint while slowing down the individual scoring of Puklicz and derailing the Western offence as the purple and white failed to spark a sustained scoring run throughout the quarter. Both teams pushed the pace throughout the frame, but the pace seemed to force poor shot selection from both sides as Western went into the halftime break deadlocked at 24-24.

Puklicz quickly found her groove once again to begin the second half, scoring with ease alongside Horst as the purple and white opened the third quarter with a strong offensive run. The ball movement would lead the offence throughout the second half, as Horst's offensive effort would spark an 18-0 run to begin the frame and grow into a dominating lead midway through the third. Western's offence would continue to roll throughout the quarter, heading into the fourth with a 28-4 run and a 52-28 lead.

The Golden Hawks would attempt to battle back throughout the fourth quarter, finding some success from beyond the arc, but the effort proved to be too little, too late against a Mustangs team clicking on all cylinders as Western would eventually cruise to a 65-48 victory.

Source: westernmustangs.ca



Waterloo 46 McMaster 69

The Marauders women's basketball team kicked off their season-closing home stand the way they ended their six-game road trip Wednesday.

McMaster, currently sitting in first place in the OUA West division, extended their winning streak to 11 games with a 69-46 victory over the Waterloo Warriors. Their perfect run through 2018 began on January 3 against Windsor in a 64-52 decision.

Hilary Hanaka (Hamilton, ON) led the game in scoring, finishing with 14 points and shooting five of 12 from the field. Teammates Sarah Gates (Newmarket, ON) (12 points) and Olivia Wilson (Lion's Head, ON) (10 points) also contributed double-digit nights in points, while also enjoying strong performances on the boards, combining for 16 rebounds.

Waterloo's Aphia Ward finished the game as the Warriors scoring leader with nine points, all of which came from beyond the arc.

The Marauders dominated the Warriors across the stat sheet, and translated a wide margin in rebounds into a much greater volume of shots. McMaster finished the game with 73 attempts from the field while the Warriors had only 57.

A combination of second chance points and points off turnovers would be the difference maker for the Marauders in the first half.

McMaster out-fought the Warriors on the offensive boards in the half, leading to nine second chance points, while adding 11 points off turnovers to help stretch out their lead in the opening 20 minutes of play.

As a result, the Marauders went into the locker room at the half holding onto a 28-23 lead.

The second half saw the Marauders continue to stretch out their lead, taking full advantage of opportunities at the foul line, where they shot 72.7 per cent. Waterloo finished the game committing 21 fouls compared to McMaster's 14.

Source: marauders.ca



February 9, 2018

Carleton 90 Nipissing 41

NORTH BAY, ON – The Ravens picked up where they left off at the Capital Hoops Classic and improved to 20-0 on the season by defeating the Nipissing Lakers 90-41 on the road.

Fourth-year guard Nicole Gilmore (Hamilton, ON) contributed on both ends of the floor tonight, pouring in 24 points on 8-for-11 shooting from the field, while also grabbing six rebounds and a steal in just 16 minutes of action.


The Ravens soared into Friday night with their confidence riding high following a character building win against the Gee-Gees at the Canadian Tire Centre a week prior. Guard Jenjen Abella (Hamilton, ON) canned two threes to help the Ravens wage a quick 12-0 lead over the Lakers halfway into the first frame. Maeve Theriault managed to get Nipissing on the board, but it wasn’t enough early on as Carleton closed out the quarter ahead 18-5.

Head coach Taffe Charles’ squad showed no signs of slowing down in the second quarter. Fifth-year forward Heather Lindsay (Ottawa, ON) and Gilmore combined for 16 points in the second to help the Ravens wage a comfortable 39-24 lead at halftime.

Carleton’s defence took over in the second half. The Ravens limited the Lakers to just seven points in the third quarter alone. Gilmore continued her hot shooting by hitting two open threes within the first three and a half minutes of the quarter. But the offensive showcase wasn’t limited just to Gilmore. Second-year guard Karyne Jolicoeur (Ottawa, ON) played 13 big minutes and hit a smooth corner three to push the Ravens’ lead to 63-27 with 5:07 left in the third quarter.

The Ravens entered the final quarter ahead 73-31. Despite the 42-point lead, Carleton refused to take its foot off the gas, adding another 10 points in fourth quarter, including eight timely points from third-year point guard Alexandra Trivieri (St. Catharines, ON), which helped solidify an eventual 90-41 victory.

Source: goravens.ca



Toronto 79 Queen’s 76

The Varsity Blues women's basketball team held off the No. 8 nationally ranked Queen's Gaels to secure a 79-76 victory on Friday night (Feb. 9) at the Queen's Arc.

Fifth-year guard Rahshida Atkinson recorded over 20 points for the second straight contest with a game-high 23 points, while also leading the Blues with four assists. Fourth-year standout Keyira Parkes chipped in with 15 points and four rebounds. The duo recorded the team's last five points to seal Toronto's third straight victory.

Veteran forward Emily Piccini added 13 points and a game-high six steals, while Nada Radonjic tallied 10 points and five boards in the victory.  

Queen's Sophie de Goede reached a team-high 20 points, and fellow forward Veronkia Lavergne recorded a double-double of 17 and 11 in the loss.

With the win, the Blues record jumps to 8-12 and extends their lead on Laurentian for the final playoff spot in the OUA East division. The Gaels drop to 16-4 on the season with the loss.

The theme in the first quarter for Toronto was unselfish play. Eight different players recorded a basket for the Blues in the opening frame, which created a 16-2 run. Piccini registered five points to help gain a 22-13 advantage after the first 10 minutes.

Atkinson was the perfect spark plug off the bench in the second quarter. The fifth-year geography major drilled back-to-back three pointers for a total of 10 points in the frame. On the defensive side of the ball, the Blues held the Gaels to under 28% from the field in the half as they went into the locker room up 43-31.

Queen's came out of the half running on all cylinders. They jumped out to an 8-0 run to cut the deficit to as close as five points but the Blues maintained the advantage at 55-49 heading into the final quarter.

The Gaels continued the pressure, putting together a 9-2 run to regain the lead for their first time since the first quarter with six minutes to go. There were eight lead changes the rest of the way, but a late basket by Atkinson secured for the win for Toronto.

Source: varsityblues.ca



Ottawa 84 Laurentian 71

Though the Voyageurs came out strong tonight against the visiting University of Ottawa Gee-Gees, winning the first quarter 22-17, they were unable to maintain their lead. After a damaging finish to the first half, Laurentian ultimately fell to their opponent by a final score of 84-71.

Rebounding appeared to be a potential challenge even prior to any gameplay, with the Gee Gees out-sizing the Voyageurs across the roster, especially with a dominant 6'5 forward Angela Ribarich who grabbed 10 boards and scored 19 points, most of which were in the paint. With assistance from Ribarich, Ottawa out rebounded Laurentian 55-32- a key factor in the home team's demise.

Top performer for the Voyageurs was second year guard Kayla Deschatelets who had 21 points off the bench shooting 75% from the field. Another notable contribution came from veteran guard Emily Tinnes who earned 13 points and 7 assists in the match. 

Source: luvoyageurs.com



Lakehead 63 Brock 59

The Lakehead women’s basketball team (13-8) took down the Brock Badgers (6-15) in a close finish tonight 63-59 at the Bob Davis Gymnasium in St. Catharines.

It was a close battle for the entire first quarter but Lakehead found their step going into the second after outscoring the Badgers 20-9 to gave the Thunderwolves a 32-19 lead at halftime.

Although the ‘Wolves pushed a 15 point lead at the beginning of the third, Brock quickly turned it around tying up the game at the end of the quarter. The Badgers continued their momentum in the fourth, picking up a 7 point lead. The Thunderwolves regrouped and stole back the lead with 2 minutes left and held on for the win until the final buzzer.

“Good first half defensively but Brock found some good energy in the third and made some shots as well as took it well to the basket. Kristin Gallant was super tough tonight. We need to contain the ball better then we did tonight and move the ball with purpose. Our ladies also need to relax on offence and shoot with confidence.” – Coach Jon Kreiner

Leashja Grant led all players with 27 points, 14 rebounds with 14 points coming from the fourth quarter alone.  Bridget O’Reilly had 10 points and 6 rebounds.

Source: Thunderwolves.ca



Guelph 74 Waterloo 55

WATERLOO – The growth of the Guelph Gryphons women's basketball team is starting to show as the OUA regular season nears its end. The Gryphons played well at both ends of the court in a convincing 74-55 road win over the Waterloo Warriors Saturday night.
The victory pushes the young Guelph team over the .500 mark at 11-10 and extends its win streak to three games. The Gryphons also pass the Laurier Golden Hawks to take over fifth in the OUA West standings.

"We are progressing and we're starting to peak at the right time," said head coach Mark Walton, noting that his team goes 12 players deep now. "We're getting better as a team. And it's not just the starters making contributions, it's everybody."

Third-year Gryphons' guard Sarah Holmes had a big double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds (both game-highs), while Ashley Wheeler chipped in 14 points and 5 boards. Senior Megan Brenkel came off the bench to score 10 points, all of them coming in the first half. Haley Belyk led all players with 6 assists.

Walton felt there was a balance of good offence and defence against the Warriors. The players made good decisions with the ball, leading to good shots. And they clamped down on the defensive end.
Guelph was up 19-15 after the first quarter, with the Warriors hitting 10 of 13 from the free-throw line to keep close. But the Gryphons began to pull away in the second quarter with a combination of red-hot shooting and excellent defence. Guelph put together a big 12-0 run midway through the quarter that propelled the visitors to a 45-29 lead at the half.

"That was really key and what drove the run was our defence,"Walton said. "We moved the ball well offensively and when there's a flow to the game, it helps the shooters. We would pass the ball six, seven, eight times and boom, we had a good shot."
The Gryphons shot 47 per cent from the floor in the first half and managed to sink 6 of 13 from beyond the arc, three of them coming from Holmes (11 points in the half).
Holmes has been back in the Guelph lineup for five games after missing 11 with an illness. The guard is finding her stroke, having scored 36 points in the last two games.

"She's starting to get her legs back," said Walton. "And it's helping her shot.

"It's nice to have her back. It's a lot harder to play without her. Sarah does so many little things really well. She's making effort plays now. She essentially missed most of the season so she's just starting to come into her own form now, that playing form."

Source: gryphons.ca



Other Scores:

Windsor 66 Algoma 53



February 10, 2018

Western 44 McMaster 66

With just two games remaining in the regular season, the Marauders show no sign of letting up.

The McMaster women's basketball team won their 12th straight game Saturday afternoon when they defeated the Western Mustangs 66-44 at home.

With the win, the Marauders secured the season series against the Mustangs, having won the game in London back on January 20. Mac squeaked out that one with an 83-80 victory.

Back at home, head coach Theresa Burns and her Marauders made sure not to make things to chance down the stretch.

Marauders leading scorer Hilary Hanaka (Hamilton, ON) tallied 20 points in the win, shooting 64 per cent from the field. More impressive was her 83 per cent from beyond the arc, knocking down five of six.

Meanwhile, teammate Sarah Gates (Newmarket, ON) was just shy of a repeat performance against the Mustangs. Gates went on to finish the game with 15 points, just one short of her output in the teams' last meeting.

Mackenzie Puklicz (London, ON) scored 14 points for the Mustangs to lead her team in scoring in a losing effort.

The opening quarter saw both sides struggle for rhythm as neither team really was able to get their offence moving. After 10 minutes, the teams had combined for 19 turnovers.

Western had many opportunities to bridge the gap between themselves and the Marauders, finishing the game with 20 offensive boards and leading the turnover differential 17-10. Despite all that, the Mustangs only tallied six second chance points and 10 points off of turnovers.

Ranking sixteenth in the OUA for free throw percentage prior to the start of the game, the Mustangs continued their season-long struggle from the line. The Marauders committed a total of 19 fouls against the Mustangs but Western shot a dismal 36.8 per cent on resulting free throws.

Meanwhile, the Marauders registered 22 points off turnovers, showing their ability to capitalize on their opportunities, while shooting 83.3 per cent from the foul line.

In the second half, the Marauders got their usual offence flowing after struggling in the opening 20 minutes.

McMaster racked up 20 shot attempts from beyond the arc after only attempting four in the first half. Ranking among the best in the OUA in three-point percentage (31.4), the Marauders finished the game with nine three-pointers, seven of which came in the second half.

The Marauders stretched out their lead in the fourth quarter, leading by 23 points by the 2:11 mark of the final quarter, and would hold steady from there as the final minutes ticked away on the Mustangs comeback attempt.

With the win, McMaster improves to 18-4 on the season with two games remaining in their schedule. The Marauders sit atop of the OUA West Division.

Source: marauders.ca



Ryerson 82 Queen’s 75

KINGSTON, Ont. – The Rams struggles in 2018 came to an end on Saturday night as they snapped a six-game losing skid in dramatic fashion, with an 82-75 overtime win against the No. 8 Queen’s Gaels.

Unlike the last time these two teams met, which began rather quickly with Queen’s domination of the match, it would be the Rams who would be firmly in the driver’s seat throughout the first half.  

Playing with a team chemistry and combined determination that had yet come to fruition in 2018, the Rams utilized the entirety of their offensive prowess to finish the first two quarters atop the Gaels 45-24.  

With Bronwyn Williams (Toronto, Ont.) leading all Rams scorers with 10 points, fellow teammates Marin Scotten (Ottawa, Ont.) and Jama Bin-Edward (Waterloo, Ont.) similarly had huge first halves, combining for 16 points and nine rebounds.

Additionally, the Rams had concluded the first half shooting an otherworldly seventy-percent from the field, to go along with eighty-percent shooting from beyond the arc.  By contrast, the Gaels were shooting less than thirty-percent from the field, to go along with less than twenty-percent shooting from three.

This tremendous offensive showing from the Rams would unfortunately begin to slow down as the third quarter began.

Transitioning from the first to the second half, the Rams would see their collective offensive contributions drop from 23 points in the second quarter, to 15 points in the third, to just 10 points in the fourth.

By contrast, the Gaels maintained an incredible offensive surge throughout the second half, combining to score 46 points throughout the final two quarters to force the contest into overtime with the score tied 70-70.

Offensively, Queen’s was led predominately by Abby Dixon (North Vancouver, B.C.) who posted 17 points on the night, and first year post-player Sophie de Goede (Victoria, B.C.) who provided 22 points on the evening.

After having lost the majority of their momentum throughout the final frame of regulation time, the Rams were able to rally back to score 12 points in the extra quarter while forcing the Gaels to commit numerous turnovers.

This combination of offensive resilience and defensive tenacity would allow the Rams to tally a victory on the evening, as they would go on to best the Gaels 82-75 in overtime.

With the win, the Rams improve to 11-10 on the season. The Rams will be looking to keep this momentum going, as they head back to the Mattamy for their final two games of the regular season, on February 16 and 17 against Nipissing and Laurentian.

Source: ryersonrams.ca



Ottawa 79 Nipissing 47

The Nipissing Lakers women's basketball team played their final home game of the season Saturday night against the high flying Ottawa Gee Gees.

The Lakers fought hard and held their own for much of the first half, but Ottawa pulled away in the end, on their way to a 79-47 victory over Nipissing.

A fast pace game saw both teams running the court, but it was Ottawa who closed out the quarter leading 22-11. Despite Nipissing's best efforts in the second quarter, Ottawa extended their lead.

At halftime the score read 39-25 for Ottawa, but the game was within reach for the Lakers if they continue their strong play.

The third quarter didn't go Nipissing's way, however, as Ottawa outscored them 23-13 and built up a 62-38 lead after 30 minutes.

The Lakers weren't going down without a fight, though and picked up their game in the final quarter.

A late push wasn't enough, as Ottawa outscored Nipissing 17-9 in the final quarter.

When it was all said and done, the final was 79-47 in favour of the Gee Gees.

Jamie Soffer had a big game, scoring 20 points and Devanee Dewey added seven in Saturday's game against Ottawa.

Source: nulakers.ca



Carleton 76 Laurentian 43

SUDBURY, ON – Carleton’s bench provided some welcome relief in support of the starters as part of a 76-43 win that saw seven members of the Ravens’ second unit play 10 minutes or more. Freshmen Madison Reid (Carleton Place, ON) and Emma Kiesekamp (Merrickville, ON) turned in two of the best games of their young U Sports careers, combining for 17 points and 10 boards to bolster a well-rounded effort from the Ravens’ reserves.

Fifth-year Jenjen Abella (Hamilton, ON) impacted the game in a variety of ways as part of a 13-point performance that saw the crafty point guard hit three three-pointers, dish out four assists, while also picking up a steal in 17 minutes.


The Ravens jumped out to a quick 14-1 lead thanks to the determined play of Abella from the game’s onset, who nailed a corner three to bolster the early 13-point lead with 6:11 left to go in the opening quarter. The margin jumped to 19-1 following a nice layup in traffic by forward Alyssa Cerino (Stoney Creek, ON). Mackenzie Robinson was able to answer Cerino’s layup with a finger roll of her own 16 seconds later following a smooth give and go with Emily Tinnes, but the Voyageurs still trailed by 16 heading into the second.

Laurentian began the second quarter on an 8-6 run, but with the possibility of an early comeback in the air, the Ravens’ bench snuffed out any attempt at a first half rally. Back-to-back three-pointers from guard Nicole Gilmore (Hamilton, ON) and Reid pushed Carleton’s lead to 20 midway through the frame. Reid would tally another strike from three-point range before the end of the quarter to help Carleton wage a 36-14 lead at halftime.

The Voyageurs turned in their best stretch of play in the third quarter as they did their best to match Carleton’s multi-faceted offensive attack. The Ravens opened the quarter on a 9-0 run, which concluded when Andrea Zulich cashed in a layup attempt off a feed from Robinson at the 4:29 mark. The layup sparked a 15-9 push on behalf of the Voyageurs, but despite Laurentian’s best efforts, Carleton still led 54-29 entering the fourth quarter.

Head coach Taffe Charles continued to lean on his bench in the fourth. The reserves paid dividends as Kiesekamp scored all eight of her points in the final frame in what proved to be a near double-double performance from the upstart forward. The Ravens outscored the Voyageurs 22-14 to close out the 76-43 win and preserve their undefeated record.

Source: goravens.ca



Toronto 59 York 57

Fourth-year guard Keyira Parkes and the University of Toronto Varsity Blues women's basketball team defeated the York Lions 59-57 to clinch a playoff spot on Saturday night (Feb. 10) at the Tait McKenzie Centre.

Parkes drained a game-high 20 points to push the Blues winning streak to four-game. The third-year guard is averaging 18.9 points per game in 2018.

Second-year forward Nada Radonjic hit two key three-pointers in the fourth quarter to amass 10 points. She also grabbed a team-high five rebounds and three steals in the victory. 

Chante Clarke led the way for the Lions with 17 points and seven rebounds in the losing effort. In Lindsay Shotbolt's last home game of her career, she tallied eight points, three steals, two blocks and a monstrous 19 rebounds.

The Blues record upgrades to 9-12 and are only two games back of York for the fifth spot in the OUA East division. The Lions drop to 11-10 on the season.

Toronto got off to a slow start shooting under 15 percent from the field in the first quarter. Sarah Bennett kept them in it with six points, but the Blues were doubled up, trailing 19-8 after the opening 10 minutes.

Toronto was better offensively in the second quarter. They created a 9-2 run right off the bat to cut the deficit to just two at one point but were down 28-23 at halftime.

Parkes stepped up and showed off her offensive abilities out of the locker room. The third-year guard drained seven straight points as the Blues went on a 9-2 run to tie things up. She netted a total of 11 points at the end of the third quarter, but more importantly the team took their first lead of the game at 42-41.

Six different players recorded a bucket for the Blues in the fourth quarter. One of which was Radonjic, who drilled two three-pointers and assisted on the Blues last basket. On the final possession, she forced Shotbolt to miss the game-winner to seal the deal.

Source: yorkulions.ca



Lakehead 67 Brock 59

The Lakehead women’s basketball team (14-8) swept the Brock Badgers (6-16) tonight in a 67-59 victory at the Bob Davis Gymnasium.

The Thunderwolves led 15-9 after the first quarter and pushed an 18-point lead in the middle of the second. The Badgers slowly chipped away at the score to bring it to 32-26 at halftime. Brock continued to put up a fight in the next two quarters but the Thunderwolves were able to maintain their lead and take home the win.

Tonight’s win solidifies that the Wolves will host an OUA playoff game on February 21st at 7:00pm in the Thunderdome.

“I thought we were more consistent defensively tonight. Struggled at times containing and rotating to the 3 but we competed hard and rebounded much better. Leashja carried us this weekend but tonight Jerika and Bridget stepped up and had solid games.” – Coach Jon Kreiner

Leashja Grant had 21 points, 17 rebounds and both Jerika Baldin and Bridget O’Reilly put up 14 points each.

The Wolves were much better on the boards tonight, out-rebounding Brock 48-37.

Source: thunderwolves.ca



Other Scores:

Windsor 80 Algoma 45



February 11, 2018

Guelph 74 Laurier 56

WATERLOO, Ont. – The playoff-bound Guelph Gryphons women's basketball team continue to climb up the OUA West standings. Sunday afternoon in Waterloo, the Gryphons picked up a convincing 74-56 win over the Laurier Golden Hawks. Guelph shot 50% from the floor in the opening quarter, scoring 25 points to build up a nine-point lead heading ot the 2nd. The Gryphons would hold Laurier to just 12 points in the 2nd quarter to take a 15-point lead into the locker room at the half. After a Laurier surge in the 3rd quarter, the Gryphons would put the game out of reach in the 4th, outscoring the Hawks 20-10 to secure the victory. The game was played at the Manulife Sportsplex at RIM Park with Laurier's regular home court currently undergoing repairs after suffering water damage. With the win, the Gryphons (12-10) guarantee themselves a finish of no worse than 5th in the OUA West standings (top six make playoffs). With two games still remaining on the regular season schedule, the Gryphons have the chance to finish 4th, which would mean they would be hosting an opening round playoff game.
"We got off to a great start today and received a lot of production from our bench," said Gryphons head coach Mark Walton. "Our shot selection was terrific and our defence was outstanding throughout."
Helping lead the way for the Gryphons defensively was fourth year guard Haley Belyk as well as rookie guard Burke Bechard. The two guards took turns trying to contain one of the OUA's top scorers in Laurier's fifth year guard Nicole Morrison. And they did more than just contain her. They held her to her worst offensive outing of the season. Morrison came into the game as the 3rd-leading scorer in the conference, averaging just under 20 points per game (19.6). Belyk and Bechard combined to limit her to a season-low in made field goals. Morrison finished the day just 1-of-19 shooting from the floor.
On the offensive end, the Gryphons were led by third year forward Ashley Wheeler. The Stratford native came off the bench and poured in a team-high 16 points on 6-11 shooting. Wheeler also made some big contributions at the defensive end, accounting for all 4 of her team's blocks in the game.
Third year forward Sarah Holmes finished the day with a double-double (13 points, 16 rebounds) and was the only player on either team to not come off the floor, logging 40 minutes of floor time.
The Gryphons, winners of four in a row and six of their last seven, will finish off their regular season schedule with a pair of home games against the Warriors and Mustangs. The Gryphs will host Waterloo on Valentine's Day (Wednesday, Nov. 14) before closing out the regular season on Saturday afternoon (Feb. 17) with a 1pm tip versus Western.
The Mustangs (12-10) and Gryphons (12-10) regular season finale on Saturday will also serve as a preview of a first-round playoff matchup.

Source: gryphons.ca