By Harlan Nemers
After a second-half surge to their season, the Rams (10-12) are heading to playoffs for their fourth straight year to face an evenly matched opponent.
The Ryerson Rams’ women’s basketball team will host the Queens Gaels in the East division semi-final in the first round of the OUA playoffs Wednesday night at Kerr Hall Gymnasium.
“The playoffs [are] a whole new season for us,” said Rams’ rookie guard Palig Baghdasarian. “We’re taking it one game at a time.”
In two regular season matchups, the Rams are 1-1 against the Gaels.
In their first matchup, Ashley Clarke’s steal and finish with 3.1 seconds sent the game to overtime where the Rams won 74-64. Ashley Macdonald’s 20 points lead the way for the Rams.
The Rams lost their most recent matchup February 5 as they let a late five-point lead sneak away. Gemma Bullard scored 14 points and 16 rebounds to lead the Gaels to a 62- 61 win.
Rams’ fourth-year forward Ashley MacDonald, who led the East Division in scoring during the regular season, is averaging 24 points per game against the Gaels.
Gael’s top scorer Brittany Moore, who is among the top five in OUA scoring, is averaging 17.5 point per game against the Rams in those games.
Ryerson’s top rebounder, Alexandrea Tkaczyk, has averaged 12 rebounds per game against Queens, while the Gaels’ top rebounder, Jill Wheat, has averaged 9.5 against the Rams this season.
The Rams’ and Gael’s team stats are virtually identical. The Rams have a 0.8 better field goal percentage, are allowing 0.3 per cent fewer baskets and are averaging 0.09 points per game more.
Meanwhile, the Gael’s have a 0.1 better field goal percentage and are allowing 0.01 assists per turnovers more than the Rams.
The Rams are heading to playoffs for their ninth time since the 1996-1997 season, the year they were introduced into the OUA. During those 14 years, they have never faced the Gaels in any post-season game.
The Rams are 14-42 against the Gaels all-time.
Photo by Chelsea Pottage