Women’s Basketball remains winless in SoCon with two losses

By Daniel Johnson, Staff Writer

Published in print Feb. 25, 2015

As the weather outside begins to heat up and melt away the ice and snow left on the ground, the Women’s basketball team continued their cold streak of a season by losing another pair of matches against Southern Conference opponents last week.

The team is entering the final week of their season at a “very respectable” 5-22 record and 0-12 record against SoCon opponents. With match-ups this week against Wofford and Friday’s Senior Night game against Western Carolina, UNCG has two more attempts to get a win in conference, as they struggled accomplishing this feat last week against East Tennessee State and Furman.

Game 1: UNCG 66, ETSU 84

ETSU is in second place in overall and conference record in the Southern Conference with respective records at 19-8 and 11-1. In their first game against the Spartans in Johnson City, TN last month, the Bucs won by twenty-two points. That being said, their victory of 84-66 against the Spartans, could unfortunately be seen as an improvement for the Blue and Gold. The game saw ETSU shoot 58.3 percent from the field, as well as 46.2 percent from the three-point line. Not one shooter on the Spartans side who took more than five shots attempts shot 50 percent. UNCG had  difficulty containing opposing forwards Destiny Mitchell and Serena Clark who both recorded double-doubles in the contest. The pair dominated the game, combining for thirty-six points, thirty rebounds, while shooting a combine 17-23 from the field. Despite the Spartans shooting fourteen more shots overall (74-60), the team still had nine fewer attempts go in on their side (26-35). Also, the Spartans had three more steals (12-9) and six fewer overall turnovers (22-16), but still had fewer points off turnovers and fast break points than the Buccaneers.

For a silver lining in one of the darkest seasons for Women basketball in recent memory, the game high scorer was UNCG guard, Lucy Mason, with twenty-three.

Game 2: UNCG 68, Furman 77

To close out their road schedule for the season, the team traveled to Greenville, SC to face the Furman Paladins. Like in the game against ETSU, the Spartans had some oddities in their stats. Aside from guard Bailey Williams, not a single player on the Spartan team who took at least five shot attempts, shot at least 50 percent from the field. Again, Lucy Mason, with twenty-two points, led both teams in scoring. And as seen in the ETSU match-up, the Paladins had two different players dominating the game and recording double-doubles. Forward Brittany Hodges with twenty-one points and thirteen rebounds, and guard Whitney Bunn with seventeen points and twelve assists were simply too much for UNCG. The two combined to score 38 of their team’s 77 points, shot 11-for-17 from the field, and 16-for-21 from the free throw line. Furman had an overall 51.1 shooting percentage from the field to the Spartans 37.9 percent. For the icing on the cake, despite having an advantage on steals (9-2) and on overall turnovers (21-10) the Paladins still barely had more fast break points.

Looking at the season stats, you can see the biggest issue for Wendy Palmer’s squad. Defensively, the team is decent. They average about two more steals a game than opponents. They even turn the ball over 2.6 fewer times. The trouble this season has been on offense. UNCG is slightly lower than their competition when it comes in both three pointers made per game and free throw percentage. The biggest issue for the Spartans is their abysmal overall field goal percentage. Compared to the .471 percent they allow, the team on average only shoots .359 percent from the field. Out of all the Spartan players who have taken at least fifty shots on the season, only Jade Scaife has a shooting percentage above .400 percent. Whatever the reason for the lack of efficiency on the offensive side, the team has only two games to fix these many problems before the SoCon Tournament.         

Categories: daniel johnson, Sports

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