OUA East opponents have not been kind to the McMaster Marauders, with the Ottawa Gee-Gees handing the Marauders their second loss of the season, 82-64.
Friday night’s match at Montpetit Hall saw the home debut of an experienced Gee-Gee team, led by fifth-year guard Warren Ward. An energetic crowd gave Ottawa a hop in their step, coming out with 8-0 run to start the game.
Ward used his ball-handling to weave his way to mid-range territory and finished off with a stepback jumper. But it wouldn’t be his scoring that would undo McMaster; it was his play making.
Mac collapsed on any move to the paint, and the veteran had no problem finding his teammates behind the arc. Ottawa finished the game with 10 threes on 41.7% shooting. The birthday boy Ward finished the game with 18 points and 7 assists.
With Taylor Black picking up two fouls in the first thirty seconds, Coach Amos Connolly looked to Nathan McCarthy to take over at the centre position. McCarthy put together his best effort of the season, being active on both ends of the court.
Ottawa led 44-33 at the half, with a red-hot offense giving them momentum into the locker room. 44 points is a season-high for points allowed by McMaster in the 2012-13 season. The game would not stay close for long, with Ottawa outscoring Mac 21-15 in the third.
No player was able to establish themselves offensively for the Marauders as the team look to attack from the wings. The Gee-Gee defense used their length to meet Mac at the baseline, forcing errant passes and turnovers. Scott Laws led the team in scoring with 11 points, all in the first half.
Mac showed little backbone in the game, allowing the Gee-Gees to get whatever they wanted at both baskets. Connolly’s squad will need to step up the intensity for next game as they visit reigning CIS champion Carleton Ravens.
The Ravens sit at 2-1 on the season and have to forget about the previous loss in order to conquer the OUA favourites.