Ravens Men and Gee-Gees Women Win at Capital Hoops Classic
Photo credit: Carleton University
The Capital Hoops Classic between the Carleton University Ravens and University of Ottawa Gee-Gees helped reignite their bitter rivalry once again. It is the 13th year that the city of Ottawa has been blessed with the high-level university basketball showcase.
The event hosted at Canadian Tire Centre, home of the Ottawa Senators, produced mixed results for the two schools. Carleton won the men’s matchup and Ottawa won the women’s.
The men capped the night with the second of the two games. The Ravens topped the Gee-Gees 82-64. Though the lopsided final score may indicate otherwise, Ottawa was able to hang with the top-ranked Ravens save for a disastrous first quarter.
Carleton built a 25-7 lead after the opening frame. The teams then matched each other with exactly 57 points each over the subsequent three quarters. The Ravens dictated the game however by dominating the glass, outrebounding Ottawa 51-30.
Four different Ravens scored in the double-digits. Carleton star forward Eddie Ekiyor was the star of the matchup with 25 points and 12 rebounds, while guard Marcus Anderson delivered with an incredibly well rounded performance. He scored 16 points (12 courtesy of three-pointers), seven rebounds, six assists and five steals.
Ottawa’s Guillaume Pépin knocked in 17 points for the Gee-Gees and got to the free-throw line for a game-high 10 attempts.
It was a similar story earlier that night in terms of a slow start, but in favour of a different school’s team. The Gee-Gees defeated the Ravens 61-52 in the women’s Capital Hoops Classic. Ottawa was able to take control early in the game and then again down the stretch to secure their first victory in the Classic in four years.
The matchup pitted Ontario’s best defense (Carleton) against its most efficient offense (Ottawa). It was a nightmare start for the reigning national champion Ravens.
They scored only six first quarter points to immediately put themselves in an early hole. But the Ravens found their footing offensively in the following two quarters. Carleton outscored the Gee-Gees 19-10 in the third to cut the Ottawa lead to two but faded down the stretch in the fourth quarter on both ends.
Carleton marginally outshot Ottawa by field goal percentage but the difference came in the Ravens being vastly outshot from deep. Carleton hit only 11.5% of their three-point attempts while Ottawa hit 38.1%. Three-point shooting has been one of the few problems for the Ravens this season. They rank 10th in the OUA in three-point shooting percentage.
There was also a significant disparity between how the two teams’ benches performed. The Gee-Gees’ bench outscored their Carleton counterparts 18-6.
Ottawa guard Sarah Besselink led the Gee-Gees with 15 points, the majority of which came from long-range shooting. All four of her made baskets came from behind the three-point arc. She also delivered down the stretch when the game became tighter. 12 of her 15 points came in the second half.
Carleton’s Nicole Gilmore notched the game’s only double-double, finishing with 11 rebounds to go along with a game-high 17 points.
The Gee-Gee win helped extend Ottawa’s lead atop the East Division to two games above the Ravens as the OUA season hits its home stretch. The teams won’t meet until a potential provincial playoff matchup in late February’s Critelli Cup.
Both Carleton and Ottawa’s men’s and women’s teams should be in contention for the upcoming OUA and U Sports championships.
The rivalry between Ravens’ and Gee-Gees’ athletics remains one of the most arresting in University sports. The Capital Hoops Classic concludes a yearlong slate full of memorable events.
Between the Capital Hoops Classic, the Panda Game (Football) and the Colonel By Classic (Hockey), Carleton finishes the athletic year with a slight advantage over the University of Ottawa in the head-to-head matchups. The Ravens’ record is 3-2 in those games.