By Matt Ouellet
The eighth-ranked Ryerson women’s basketball team (7-3) defeated the team one spot ahead of it in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) national rankings, the McMaster Marauders, 80-77 Saturday at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.
The Rams went on a 12-0 run in the first three minutes of the game, which guard Keneca Pingue-Giles said was a big factor in the win.
“In our first possession when we got three offensive rebounds, I feel like that really set the tone right there,” she said. “Then we came back with a defence and tenacity that allowed us to not let them score.”
The fourth-year guard was an offensive boon for Ryerson with 29 points and six assists, leading the team in those stats in her 31 minutes on the court.
The Rams kept the momentum all the way through the first half, as they led the Marauders 49-34 at halftime.
The third quarter started off shaky for Ryerson, as McMaster vastly tightened up its defence, forcing the Rams to score just seven points and decreasing the deficit to three points. Head coach Carly Clarke used the team’s recent losses to illustrate how McMaster could be overcome.
“We talked about how we knew they weren’t going to go away, just like we didn’t go away on Wednesday when U of T had a lead on us,” Clarke said. “Teams are going to fight, so we need to be calm, composed, collected and understand that it was going to be a battle and we need to get back to the things that were working for us.”
The Rams started off the fourth quarter with a 9-3 run, with scoring led by Pingue-Giles and Silvana Jez.
Ryerson maintained its lead through the fourth quarter when, with 10.5 seconds left and the score 78-77, Jez drew a foul and sank both free throws, locking down the victory for the Rams.
Ryerson’s next game is Wednesday, Jan. 14 against the York Lions at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.