By Noah Love
An old sports cliche says you have to be good to be lucky and lucky to be good. If you don’t believe it, you obviously didn’t see Miruna Muller and Ryerson’s women’s basketball team play last weekend.
With the Rams trailing 44-47 in their final seconds of their home opener against the York Yeowomen on Friday, Nov. 10, Muller, a fifth-year guard, threw up a prayer from just a few feet past the half-court line. The shot hit the backboard, then went in, sending the game into overtime.
Muller went on to score the game-winning three-pointer in double overtime, and net 25 points overall, in the Rams’ 63-58 win.
“These are lucky shots that you’re not going to make all the time,” said Muller, who was named to the OUA East Division all-star team last year. “I actually planned that one though,” she said with a smile.
The next night Muller was the top scorer in the Rams’ 71-64 loss to the defending OUA East Division champions, the Laurentian Lady Vees. Ryerson led 38-35 at the half, but ran out of steam in the final 10 minutes of the game — not a huge disappointment considering Laurentian has consistently been one of the best teams in Canada. The Lady Vees have won 14 of the last 26 division titles.
“If we can hang in there against Laurentian for three quarters, we’re probably building toward some good results,” said Muller, who scores 17 points in the Laurentian game.
Assistant women’s basketball coach Richard Dean was pleased with his team’s effort on the weekend.
“We were happy with a win against York because we played a sloppy game,” Dean said after playing the Vees. “Against Laurentian we were able to compete and even though they won, we played very well.”
Dean said the team has to build on its strong performances in the first two regular-season games so players will be ready to compete for the Ontario East championship by the end of the season.
“We’re on the right track, and as long as we’ve got it together in February we’ll be okay,” he said.
If the Rams are successful in the spring, Muller will likely be a big reason why. The social work student not only hit some key shots to win the game against York in double overtime, but she also jumped on loose balls and dribbled around opponents like a Harlem Globetrotter, forcing players to foul her.
“Miruna’s our leader and one of the best shooters in the country,” said fourth-year early childhood education students and guard Eva Ain. “We know we have a really strong team with a good mix of veterans and rookies. Hopefully some of us can step up and take the pressure of Miruna.”
This weekend the Rams have two more games at home. On Friday they face Bishop’s University and on Saturday they play the Universite of Laval. Both games are at 6 p.m. in Kerr gym.