Ravens Sports Information (Photo: Valerie Wutti, Blitzen Photography)
OTTAWA - The Carleton Ravens handed the Queen's Gaels their first loss of the season on Friday night with a decisive 64-32 victory.
The Ravens impressive victory began with a huge opening quarter before they never looked back. "We followed our scout and played as a team," explained Ravens forward Jacqueline Urban. "We played really united on defence and offence and I think getting those defensive stops is what really led to us winning," she added.
The Ravens defence was overwhelming in the first quarter, smothering the Gaels and times and forcing one of the best offensives in the country to shoot just 17.6%. Carleton took advantage of the Gaels trouble and quickly built out a 22-8 lead in front of a boisterous home crowd.
Oceane Kounkou (Gatineau, Que.) was impressive in the first quarter for the Ravens, shooting a perfect 3-for-3 including 2-for-2 from beyond the arc to lead Carleton with 8 points. As she so often does, Kali Pocrnic (Oakville, Ont.) led Carleton at both ends of the court providing 5 assists in the opening quarter.
In the second quarter, the Gaels found their stride led by nine points from Emma Weltz while Pocrnic took over for Carleton scoring eight points despite suffering a bloody lip that would see her go to the bench late in the quarter.
With Pocrnic cleaned up and back on the court sporting a fat lip, the Ravens showed their grit as they continued to grind down the top-ranked Gaels. "We know they are a really good team of shooters and we had to respect them," said Urban. While import to respect the Gaels, the Ravens mindset was not to back down. "We also have to respect ourselves, our abilities and how much time we've put in in the gym," Urban explained.
And back down they didn't, Carleton's defence went into full lockdown in the third quarter almost completely shutting out Queen's allowing just one point - an Isabelle Gaudet free throw seven minutes into the quarter.
The Ravens never looked back, outscoring Queen's 25-11 in the final twenty as they handed Queen's their first loss.
Looking ahead, Urban and the Ravens believe they have a formula that, when applied, will continue to help them find success moving forward. "We just have to keep preparing like we prepared for this game; focusing, doing our scouts and staying locked in."