Fifth straight win to start the year

The Wilfrid Laurier University women’s basketball team has blasted out of the gate this season. A week after picking up two wins on the road, the Hawks held their own on their home court and improve to 5-1 on the season.

This past weekend they downed the two clubs from our nation’s capital — the Carleton Ravens and Ottawa Gee-Gee’s, by scores of 73-58 and 69-59 respectively.

On Friday evening, the Hawks faced off against the Ravens in a rematch of last year’s Ontario University Athletics bronze medal game, in which Laurier came away with the victory. According to fourth year guard Sam Jacobs, it was something that was definitely in the back of the team’s mind.

“We knew that we had a bit of a target on our back because we knew they wanted to get that one back. We had to come with everything we had,” she said.

Jacobs dropped 12 points on the night, however she was not the only player to make a statement. In what is becoming typical of this ball club, multiple players reached double figures yet again.

Fifth-year forward Whitney Ellenor finished with a team-high 18, third-year guard Kaitlyn Schenck had 14 and second-year guard Nicole Morrison chipped in with 12. The Hawks only led by two at the half, but head coach Paul Falco thought a stronger compete level was the key to the large  margin of victory.

“We competed harder. We were almost even in the rebounding in the second half. In the first half they destroyed us, so I was pleased with our second half that game,” he said.

On Saturday the focus shifted from the tall inside presence of Carleton, to a shorter, floor spreading Ottawa club. According to second-year guard Sarah Dillon, the wins over the weekend were strongly attributed to being prepared for the opponent.

“I think we just followed the scouting report. We had to know our matchups and play to their strengths and weaknesses. I think we did a really great job of knowing the scouting report of both teams. We made them make tough shots,” she said.

Dillon was the Hawks leading scorer on Saturday, pouring in 15 points, all of which came from beyond the three point arc.

Falco explained for a shooter like Dillon, it is only a matter of time before things start to fall for her.

“Sarah is a really good shooter. She’s had some tough luck in some games so far where things just haven’t dropped. She’s making the right choices and as a shooter you just have to keep shooting so it was nice to see them drop for her,” he said.

In both games, the Hawks were involved in a two-point contest at halftime, before they began to pull away from both teams from eastern Ontario. Falco believes that is due to a combination of heart and halftime adjustments.

“I guess maybe a little bit of perseverance. We knew that there was a few mistakes we made in the first half that were correctable, so we talked about trying to do things a little bit differently on the defensive end,” he said.

They will now look to take care of a 1-5 Waterloo Warriors squad at Waterloo on Nov. 26 before the term ends.

As of now, the team is rolling and Jacobs is starting to see a formula for the success they are having.

“I think it’s our intensity. You can definitely tell in the games that we haven’t brought it 100 per cent, we have struggled. When we are able to get that 100 per cent effort from everyone on the court and on the bench, that’s when we really pull away in game,” she said.

 

Photo by Heather Davidson

Photo by Heather Davidson

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