The McMaster women and men’s basketball teams got back to OUA action on Friday night following their holiday break, picking up a pair of wins over the Laurier Golden Hawks.

McMaster’s lady’s squad, who are ranked fifth nationally, eased into the new year capturing their tenth victory of the season at the expense of Laurier, by a final of 82-62.

The visiting squad clad in maroon would explode for 33 points in the second half to build up a 50-27 lead at the break. The rode that lead the rest of the way to notch their fourth consecutive victory, keeping pace with the Lakehead Thunderwolves (10-1) at the top of the OUA West division.

Mac’s 20-point margin of victory was the sixth such victory for the Marauders over the 12 games of OUA play.

McMaster scored the first three buckets of the game for a 6-0 lead before Laurier got on the board 4:21 into the first quarter. They would go on to lengthen their lead throughout the quarter as the spread the offense around.

Then in the second quarter the Marauders turned up the heat scoring 33 points. That total alone was more than double that Laurier scored in the quarter and more than the home side had put on the scoreboard in the first half (27).

While the second half was a lot closer than the first half was, Laurier could no chip away at the lead to give them a chance to gain a victory.

Four Marauders would hit the double-digit mark for points in the game with veteran Linnaea Harper leading the way with 17. Also hitting the mark were Hilary Hanaka (15), Sarah Gates (14) and Mia Spadafora (12) as the ladies hit 41 percent from the floor as a team and 46 percent from beyond the arc.

For the men, it wasn’t as easy a game for them but, excluding 91 seconds of play in the first quarter, they led the entire game, defeating the Hawks 79-67.

Connor Gilmore led the way for the men in maroon, posting 22 points and bring in eight rebounds.

David McCulloch would make a layup with just under four minutes to go in the first quarter to tie up the game at ten. That bucket sparked an 11-3 run over the rest of the quarter to give McMaster a 19-13 lead.

In the second, Laurier battled back, getting to within a bucket on multiple occasions and even tied the game twice in the frame. However, each time they did that, the Marauders responded, even widening the gap to seven points with three minutes left until halftime where they held a 35-30 lead.

Holding a slim margin going into the second half, the Marauders stayed out front by scoring 22 points in each of the final two quarters to Laurier’s 37 points in the half. The closest the Hawks would get in the second half was a point back as the clock neared the halfway point of the third quarter.

But, a 13-4 run over the final three minutes of the third quarter pulled the Marauders away from Laurier, leaving little doubt, even with a closely contested fourth quarter, that McMaster was returning home with the victory.

Along with Gilmore posting double digit points in the game, Sefa Otchere and Jordan Henry would put up 12 and 11 points respectively in the win.

Both teams will have the remainder of the weekend off from game action but will start to prepare for their next game which is against the Guelph Gryphons on Friday, January 11 at the Guelph Gryphons Athletic Centre. The women’s game will get underway at 6:00 PM while the men are scheduled for 8:00 PM.

The first home action of 2019 for both teams will come a night later when they host the Laurier Golden Hawks with the same start times as Friday night.