Laurier women’s basketball falls to 8-11 on the season

Laurier swept during Ottawa road trip coming into final week of the season

Photo by Andreas Patsiaouros
Photo by Andreas Patsiaouros

Following a well-fought 79-62 win against the Toronto Varsity Blues on Saturday, Feb. 6, the Wilfrid Laurier women’s basketball team fell short to the Guelph Gryphons, 71-62, on Friday, Feb 12. The loss puts the Hawks at an overall record of 8-11. Since then, the Hawks went 1-2, beating the Lakehead Thunderwolves 77-60 before losing the next two games against the Carleton Ravens and the No. 6 nationally-ranked Ottawa Gee-Gees 69-46 and 68-64 respectively.

The Hawks led up until the half way mark of the second quarter before they succumbed to an 11-0 run in three minutes and 41 seconds. They continued to trail by an average of 11 points for the remainder of the game.

“Every time they got an offensive rebound [Guelph] got two points,“ said head coach Paul Falco.

By the final buzzer the Hawks had tallied 12 less rebounds than the Gryphons, alongside an 18.2 per cent three-point percentage, a 32.8 per cent field goal percentage and a 60 percent conversion rate from the free-throw line. Guelph led in almost every category during the game, which left Falco distressed after the first half. With forwards Melissa Pare and Alexandra Spadaro sidelined due to injuries, the Hawks struggled in the post, forcing Laurier to utilize their three-point shooters.

“We’re not a big team. Our two tallest girls are out and injured,” Falco explained. “It’s hard for us to look for a big post game — last week we knocked down a lot of those [three-point] shots, and this week [against Guelph] we didn’t.”

Averaging a 32 per cent three-point percentage on her career, fifth-year Courtney Bruce also struggled Friday night, missing all seven attempts from beyond the arc. Falco said that sometimes three point shots is what the defence gives them — they don’t want to settle for three’s.

“Guelph did a good job clogging it up and making it hard to get driving angles,” said Falco.

The Hawks took more than 36 per cent of their shots from the three-point line, which allowed Gryphon forward Katherine MacTavish to grab 11 rebounds and complement her boards with 10 points. With size being just a number, Laurier certainly thinks they can still play with bigger teams. Second-year guard Amanda Milanis said that the Hawks can still play with the Gryphons.

“I think we can still play with them, we just need to rebound and box out,” she said.

To add insult to injury, the Hawks went on their final road trip of the year last weekend to take on the Ravens and the Gee-Gees. The Ravens were on point from tipoff, going ahead 25-4 after the first quarter. Laurier couldn’t respond.The next night wasn’t any better as the Hawks dropped a close 68-64 decision against the No. 6 nationally-ranked Gee-Gees. Third-year guard Nicole Morrison finished the night with a game-high 25 points and added nine rebounds.

Laurier has their last regular season game on Thursday, February 25 against the Waterloo Warriors for their school day game. Tip off is at 11 a.m. at the Athletic Complex.

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