OTTAWA - The Carleton Ravens women's basketball team once again sits atop the OUA East as the only team with one loss after beating the Queen's Gaels 73-68 on Saturday night.
With Jacqueline Urban (Ancaster, Ont.) in early foul trouble, the Ravens would look to Kali Pocrnic (Oakville, Ont.) and Tatyanna Burke (Winona, Ont.) who combined for 13 first-quarter points as the Ravens pulled ahead 21-16 after 10.
Laura Donovan would look to will the Gaels back into the contest in the second quarter scoring 13 points, but only Mikayla McFarlane would add a single as Carleton extended their lead to 43-30 at the half. Donovan continued to carry the Gaels back into the fight in the third generating nine of the visitor's 24 points as they outscored the Ravens by 8.
The fourth quarter was an epic battle as the Gaels would finish erasing the Ravens' lead before Urban hit a clutch three to take a 61-58 lead. The Ravens would build up a five-point lead with 4:19 to play before Dorcas Buisa (Gatineau, Que.) would generate a steal and a layup to put Carleton up seven. After forcing a shot clock violation out of a timeout with 2:51 to play the Ravens would ice the Gaels as Buisa hit another clutch three to keep things out of reach.
Carleton's bench played a huge factor in their win Saturday night, outscoring the Gaels bench 29-7. In the face of early foul trouble, the depth was not lost on coach Dani Sinclair. "That depth is huge, with [Jacqueline] and Kyana in foul trouble early, the ability to be able to have Tatyanna and Teresa go in for them is huge."
While the depth was huge, the Ravens' head coach admits there's still some work to do in cleaning up their play. "We showed some intensity and some toughness," coach Sinclair said after the game. "
"It's still a long season to go, if we want to continue to have any success we can't just rely on being intense and being tough, we've got to be focused, composed and understand the importance of execution."
With the team settling in for a lengthy stretch at home including two games next weekend against Nipissing and Laurentian the Ravens believe in their ability to win as a team. "We have the opportunity to have a deeper team here," explained Ravens' guard Kyana-Jade Poulin. "It gives the opportunity to have other people to step up and give the same performance as the starters."
The Ravens depth may need to be on full display again next weekend as the scrappy Nipissing Lakers and Laurentian Voyageurs visit the Ravens' Nest.