By Steve Petrick
Even though the McMaster Marauders walked away with the Ryerson Women’s Basketball classic championship, the Rams may have walked away with something more important: confidence.
After winning Friday’s tournament opener in a 81-58 walkover of the lowly Windsor Lancers, the Rams were smoked Saturday by the Marauders 81-57.
Instead of crumbling after the defeat, the Rams came back against Guelph in the third place game and won 65-61.
Rams coach Sandra Pothier was satisfied with the bronze-medal finish. She was also encouraged by the way her veteran players handled themselves.
“All my returning players I expect to step up this year,” said Potheir after seeing her team outscore Windsor 40-19 in the second half last Friday. “Lisa [Poulin] hustled and worked extremely hard and ran the lanes well. I’ve seen a lot of improvement in Becky [Owen]. She pulled down some really nice boards.”
“We ha d some good shifts from people coming off the bench,” said Pothier, adding that second-year player Nadine Barnes scored two straight three-pointers late in the game to cancel any comeback bid for Windsor.
Puhst, the games’ MVP for Ryerson also swooped up 14 rebounds and caused three turnovers. After the game the 6’2” Puhst said, “We still had a bit of first game jitters. We have to work a little harder on defence. We’re concentrating on working the fast break. I thought we walked away feeling pretty good.”
That warm, tingly feeling disappeared the next day when Reyrson played McMaster.
“Today we were trying to do everything one on one. We had too many turnovers. But it’s a learning experience,” said Navarro, who had 11 points and eight rebounds.
“We have to be more patient in our front court … We have to stick with our principles and philosophies,” Pothier said.
The first regular season game is less than a month away. (November 14 vs. Queen’s).
The Rams’ next game is an exhibition this Friday against Brock in Kerr Hall gym at 6 p.m.