The men’s and women’s basketball teams were both winners Wednesday night in a double header which extended both teams’ leads atop their conferences.
A composed finish from rookie Sofia Paska helped the women’s basketball team to its longest winning streak since the 2010-11 season. Paska scored 8 points—including 6 of 6 on free throws—in the final 3:20 to help the Rams defeat the Guelph Gryphons 77-71 at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.
It was the team’s seventh straight victory and moves them to 13-3 for the season. Guelph is now 7-7.
“I thought we really played tough today,” Rams head coach Carly Clarke said. “I thought Paska was as tough as I’ve seen her inside.”
Scores were tied at 66 with 3:35 left before Paska went to work, which included hitting two free throws to push the Rams’ lead to five points with 16 seconds remaining. She went 8 of 8 from the line overall and finished with 18 points and 6 rebounds.
“I think every single time she gets the ball she gets fouled,” said Rams guard Keneca Pingue-Giles, who had 17 points and 8 rebounds. “They don’t call it, just because of her size… It’s great to see her keep her composure.”
The Gryphons drove to the rim often in the first quarter on the way to a 19-16 advantage at that time. Two three-pointers late in the second quarter from Guelph helped them take a 38-37 lead into halftime.
The Rams outscored Guelph 21-14 in the third quarter behind better containment of the Gryphons’ dribble penetration and 7 points from Pingue-Giles. Ryerson lead 58-52 entering the fourth. They rolled on to the win from there.
The men’s team did not disappoint either. A dominant second half helped them maintain their perfect record at the MAC this season.
Also playing against the Guelph Gryphons, Ryerson outscored their opponents by 23 points after halftime, leading to an 82-63 win, the team’s eighth straight. The Rams are 14-2, including a 7-0 home record. Guelph fell to 7-7.
“We didn’t really shoot the ball very well today, but we found a way to win it on the defensive end,” Rams head coach Roy Rana said.
Guelph was held to 18 points in the second half, including 8 in the fourth quarter.
“Certainly we were more aggressive defensively in the second half,” Rana said.
Ryerson’s Kadeem Green had 19 points and 7 rebounds while teammate Jahmal Jones totalled 15 points and 8 assists.
The Rams won the opening quarter 22-18 but conceded the lead in the second.
“I thought the second quarter was about us turning (the game) over,” Rana said.
Guelph’s Taylor Boers scored 14 points in the second frame to lead the Gryphons to a 45-41 halftime lead.
The Rams’ defence and a trio of made three-pointers contributed to them outscoring Guelph by 15 points in the third quarter.
“We were containing our men, one-on-one defensively,” said Rams guard Adika Peter-McNeilly.
The Rams cruised to victory from there.
Both the men’s and women’s teams will host the Lakehead Thunderwolves on Saturday night.