The Waterloo Warriors women’s teams were in great form throughout the OUA season. The women’s basketball team, which has been extensively covered over the last six months, came to a close with a seven-point game against the Queens Gaels, as did the season for the women’s volleyball team, who lost 3-0 to the Queen’s Gaels. The women’s hockey team played and fought two close games against the Nipissing Lakers, both games ending in overtime.
The Warriors basketball team did its best to defend against the pull-away lead that the Gaels built up, having gone 19-10 and 21-14 against the Warriors, taking a 16-point lead heading into half-time. The Warriors, heavily reliant on Vanessa Hughes, Kaitlyn Overeem, and Jamie Newell, managed to fight back toward the end of the game. Hughes was the highest scorer on the court, netting five 3-pointers and eight total field goals with a free-throw, bringing her to a 22-point game finish. Overeem was more accurate, scoring five in 15 attempted field goals and contributing to 13 points for the Warriors. Newell’s services were also helpful in assisting the Warriors put up a fight, as she picked up 10 rebounds through the game, spread out with four offensive rebounds and six defensive ones. For the Gaels, Emma Weltz’s 20-point game, supported by Laura Donovan, Bridget Mulholland, and Isabella Belvedere’s 14, 13, and 12-point games meant that the Gaels were able to shoot from multiple spots on the court and take the victory to the finals.
In another competitive matchup, the women’s hockey team held Nipissing in a tight challenge. In game one, Nipissing opened the scoring in front of a crowd of 627 people on home ice, scoring two more in the second period. The Warriors fought back, taking the first game into overtime by scoring one goal in the second period and two in the third. Unfortunately, willed on by the crowd, Nipissing was able to find the back of the net. Katie Chomiak, unassisted, won the game for the Nipissing Lakers in the first overtime period. Determined, the Warriors hosted the Lakers on the Columbia Ice Field, with 244 supporters in the crowd. Unfortunately, as determined as they were, the Warriors were unable to stop the Lakers, who scored two of their three goals outside of a powerplay. Although Waterloo led at the end of the second period, Leah Herrfort’s body checking offense meant that Madison Laberge was able to find assists in the form of Malory Dominico and Chomiak and take game two into overtime. Six minutes into overtime, Madison Desmerais assisted Ashley Taciuk to take the game and the semi-finals series.
Unfortunately for the Warriors volleyball team, the Carl Totzke court did not prove to be particularly advantageous. The Gaels barely won the first set, going 25-22, with the Warriors looking to take the remaining sets to clinch victory. However, it wasn’t to be, as the Gaels found a surge in energy and mindset, taking set two by a 7-point margin at 25-18, winning the match by ending set three at 25-13. The matchup saw the Warriors get eliminated from the OUA championship.
The Warriors did have a better season than previous years in many sports and will be looking to keep this momentum into the 2023-24 OUA season. The OUA figure skating and events at U SPORT’s track and field championships are still being contested, and we wish the Warriors the best of luck for the final two days of the season.