By Michael Grace-Dacosta
The defending OUA — and CIS — champion Carleton Ravens cruised to an easy 72-51 win on Friday over the Lakehead Thunderwolves in the semi-finals of the OUA Wilson Cup, held at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.
The Ravens, who finished with the top defense in the country this season, held the Thunderwolves to just 14% shooting from the field in the first half, and 24% shooting for the entire game. Carleton also out-rebounded the Lakehead 42 to 30, and hammered the Thunderwolves on the defensive glass 29 to 19.
“Our defense for pretty much 90 per cent of the game was really good,” said Carleton point guard Philip Scrubb, who was recently named OUA East MVP for the second consecutive season. “I think our defensive of rebounding was key.”
Scrubb led the Ravens in scoring with 15 points, and was followed by OUA all-star forwards Tyson Hinz (14 points, 9 rebounds) and Thomas Scrubb (11 points). Lakehead was led by guard Joseph Jones’ 15 points and forward Joseph Nitychoruk’s 12 points and 5 rebounds.
“We made a few mistakes on defense [and] we couldn’t get settle down on offense,” said Jones. “Carleton’s a great team. We held them as much as we could, we just couldn’t get our offense going today.
With the win, the Ravens advance to Saturday’s OUA Championship against their city rival, the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees. In their most recent matchup, the Ravens were pushed to triple overtime before coming out with the 111-107 win.
Despite the loss, the Thunderwolves still have something to play for. As Carleton already was guaranteed a spot in the CIS National Championships as the host, the winner of Saturday’s bronze medal game also earns a berth.
“We’re not out,” said Jones. “All we can do is look at the negatives, make sure we don’t make the same mistakes, look at the positives and take our positives in the next game and we’ll be good.”
The bronze medal game will tip off at 4 p.m. on Saturday, with the championship being played at 6 p.m.