GUELPH, Ont. (from McMaster Marauders) — Winning their eighth straight game, all in a red-hot month of January, the McMaster women’s basketball team rolled past the Guelph Gryphons in an 84-67 triumph Saturday.
The U Sports sixth-ranked Marauders moved to 14-4 atop the OUA West standings, completing the fourth game on a six-game road swing. By comparison, the Gryphons fell to 8-10 on the season and sit sixth in the divisional standings.
Veterans Hilary Hanaka and Linnaea Harper both added another strong performance to their recent run of form, which has seen the combo average 17 points per game apiece on their recent road trip, which began in Windsor on January 17.
Hanaka finished the game with 26 points, shooting 63 per cent (10-16) from the field and adding four assists and three steals.
Harper contributed 21 points of her own while also coming up big in the defensive end of the court with five blocked shots
The two squads had not matched up against one another since McMaster’s home opener, a game which the Marauders won 70-61 on October 25, 2017.
Guelph managed to keep things close in the opening quarter of play before McMaster took off in the second, outscoring the Gryphons 19-10 in the quarter.
That marked the end of any serious challenge from the home side, as the Marauders kept the pressure on when play resumed in the third quarter.
McMaster’s largest lead of the game came at the tail end of the third, as a Hanaka bucket extended the Marauders advantage to 62-45 over the Gryphons.
Closing the gap to nine points early in the fourth, the hosts looked poised to challenge. But it was as close as the Gryphons came, with the Marauders putting the game beyond reach late.
The Marauders will continue their road trip when they travel to Thunder Bay to take on the Lakehead Thunderwolves in a back-to-back series. The first game is set to be played next Friday with the second game to follow the next night at the same time.