Written by Nicholas Boon
Photo by Valerie Wutti
The #1 Carleton Ravens took care of business in their 79-54 victory over the Lakehead Thunderwolves in the OUA Quarter-Final match-up.
In Victor Raso’s return to action – his first game since January 31 against Algoma – the Ravens shut down the Thunderwolves thanks to stifling ball pressure and a dominant 47-28 rebounding advantage.
After a slow start Lakehead finally broke the ice at 8:10 with an and-one finish from Dwayne Harvey to give the Thunderwolves a 3-0 lead.
It didn’t take long before Phil Scrubb answered with a short jumper, and after a finish underneath from Jean Emmanuel Pierre-Charles, the Ravens took a 4-3 lead. Lakehead would not lead again. As Carleton put together a 10-0 run, the Thunderwolves were forced into a timeout to cut the Ravens’ momentum.
Lakehead began to click on offense, and a deep three from Jamar Coke would cut the Ravens lead late in the quarter. After the first Carleton lead 17-10 as they outshot the Thunderwolves 44% to 20%.
A pair of baskets from Guillaume Payen-Boucard early in the second built on the Ravens lead before a three from Connor Wood forced another Lakehead timeout as they trailed 28-14. Not long after Raso was found wide open for a three of his own.
Carleton continued to control the pace for the remainder of the quarter. Tough finishes in the lane from both Phil and Thomas Scrubb would extend the Ravens lead to 40-24 by halftime.
As the Thunderwolves struggled to improve their shooting – hitting just 6-30 from the floor 20 in the half – Carleton displayed their usual efficiency with 52% despite going just 3-9 from three. Lakehead was able to get to the free-throw line, hitting 10 of 11 in the half.
Phil Scrubb led all scorers with 16 points (7-12 from the field) and 4 rebounds, while Thomas Scrubb had 10 points and 5 rebounds of his own. For Lakehead it was Harvey leading the way with 10 points.
In a relatively even quarter – Carleton outscored Lakehead just 18-15 – the Thunderwolves just weren’t able to put together a run, shooting 23% in the frame.
Back-to-back baskets from Thomas Scrubb opened the third, followed shortly after by a beautiful drive and dish to Pierre-Charles who had 6 points in the quarter. A couple minutes later a three from Phil Scrubb gave the Ravens a 52-33 edge, prompting another Thunderwolves timeout.
As the teams exchanged buckets late in the third – including Wood weaving his way through the paint for a lay-up and a three from Henry Tan in response – Carleton held a 58-39 advantage going into the fourth.
The trend continued in the final quarter as the Ravens simply wouldn’t allow the Thunderwolves to get back into the game. The fourth was highlighted by a tough and-one finish from Boucard, followed shortly after by an emphatic block and finish on the other end by Pierre-Charles.
As the Thunderwolves settled for threes down the stretch – from Tan and Alexandre Robichaud – the Ravens always had an answer. Carleton would eventually seal the win with a final score of 79-54.
Despite shooting just 21% from three – after leading the country with 46% on the season – the Ravens still hit 52% from the field as they looked for easy buckets inside. The Thunderwolves weren’t nearly as comfortable from the floor – hitting just 28% on the night – though they were effective from the charity stripe (17-24 overall).
Phil Scrubb finished with 28 points (11-17 from the floor) and 6 rebounds to lead the Ravens, while Thomas Scrubb chalked up a double-double with 20 points and 13 boards. Boucard (13 points, 7 rebounds) and Pierre-Charles (10 points, 5 rebounds) both finished in double-figures for Carleton.
Tan got hot for the Thunderwolves, as he finished with 17 points (15 in the second half) on 7-13 shooting. Harvey (15 points) and Anthony McIntosh (10 points, 7 rebounds) also played well for Lakehead.
The Ravens now prepare for their OUA Semi-Final match-up with the #3 Ryerson Rams to be held on Friday, March 6 at the University of Ottawa at 8 p.m.