Photo: Deanna Krueger

Rams drop fifth straight game in nail-biter against U of T

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By Erika Dreher

Ryerson’s women’s basketball team suffered a nail-biting loss against the University of Toronto Varsity Blues Friday night, after blowing a lead they carried for almost the entire second half.

With about a minute and half left in the game, the Rams held a seven-point lead. Within the next 90 seconds, the Varsity Blues crushed all hope for a snap in the Rams’ current losing streak, and now the Rams have lost five straight.

Friday’s game was less than ideal for the Rams, and it ended with a movie-like finish. With 0.6 seconds on the clock, Ryerson’s Leyki Sorra shot a buzzer beater from what the home team crowd thought was the three-point line. The referees called it a two-point shot, resulting in a loss by one point for the Rams.
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“I mean, the end of the game you want to execute a play,” Ryerson coach Carly Clarke said on the debatable shot. “We executed it. We executed a play perfectly. A lot of the time you’re going to miss that shot… but [it was] certainly a memorable one.”

“I’ve been trying to find a replay… I still want to see it,” Clarke said.

Ryerson star forward Sofia Paska played her first game since Jan. 17 after suffering a concussion during a game against York. Paska reached two major milestones in the game against U of T; she scored a team-record 36 points, and broke the all-time team rebounding record of 648 boards.

“It’s super important just because of how hard I’ve worked over the past three-and-a-half years I’ve been here,” Paska said about her record-breaking game, “And after last week, not playing because of a concussion, I think I came back really strong.”

Clarke was impressed with her star’s accomplishments.

“Looking at where she came in, physically and mentally, to where she is now, she’s a different person,” Clarke said. “Obviously, she’s been a tremendous part of our success over the years and has helped take this program to new heights. She’s just a super talented player whose work ethic has earned all the accolades she’s received.”

Clarke had some critiques of the Rams’ performance, pointing out several areas for improvement for her team moving forward.

“Defensive rebounding has not been our strength at all, I thought we did a better job of that tonight, said Clarke. “Unfortunately, we gave them too many possessions off turnovers in place of cleaning up that part of the game.”

With the loss, the Rams slip to a 10-9 record on the season, placing them in a tie with York for fourth in the OUA East.

“The OUA East right now is a grind. It’s a grind. There’s Carleton, Ottawa, us, Queen’s, [who] have all been in the top 10 at different points this season,” Clarke said, “[U of T], historically, is an incredibly tough program.”

UP NEXT: The Rams will look to snap their five-game losing streak when they take on the York Lions on Feb. 7. Tip-off is scheduled for 11 a.m.

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