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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Cold shooting dooms Judges as their losing skid grows to four

Published: February 17, 2012
Section: Sports

The Brandeis women’s basketball team has further fallen down the UAA standings after dropping both games this past weekend, a 53-48 loss to Emory and a 53-37 loss to 11th-ranked Rochester. Two weeks ago, the Judges were hoping to establish momentum after notching their first UAA victory; however, they proceeded to go 0-4 on their four-game UAA road trip. The Judges have been struggling from the field during the past few games and this weekend was no different as their cold shooting doomed the team in both games. During their four-game losing skid the Judges are shooting just 26.7 percent (65-of-243). With the losses, the Judges fall to 8-14 (1-10 UAA) on the season.

Against Rochester this past Friday, Brandeis could not find its shooting touch. Guard Morgan Kendrew ’12 led the Judges with eight points; however, her eight points were just the second time in 10 UAA games that she had been held to less than 10 points. Forward Nicolina Vitale ’14 and guard Kelly Ethier ’12 each scored seven points off of the bench. The Judges shot just 22 percent from the field (13-of-59) for the game and failed to drain a single three-pointer going 0-of-13 as Rochester held the Judges to their second-lowest scoring total of the season.

Rochester sophomore guard Laney Ming scored 11 points for the Yellowjackets, and she was the only player in the contest to reach double figures. Additionally, sophomore forward Loren Wagner had nine points and 11 rebounds off of the bench. Finally, senior forward Jodie Luther also had eight points for Rochester.

Rochester shot just 34 percent from the field (21-of-61) and 25 percent (4-of-16) from downtown, but it was enough to win as Brandeis was never able to get into any offensive rhythm.

Brandeis committed 15 turnovers in the contest and Rochester converted those 15 turnovers into 14 easy points. Furthermore, the Judges struggled at the free-throw line, shooting just 57.9 percent (11-of-19). Despite the Judges shooting woes, if they had been able to limit their turnovers and hit their free throws they would have been in a position to win the game.

The Judges’ ability to control the offensive glass was one of the few bright spots in the game. Brandeis out-rebounded Rochester 47-46 but 17 of those were offensive rebounds that the Judges converted into 11 second-chance points.

Just two days later, the Judges looked to rebound from the loss as they traveled to Emory. Despite dominating the Eagles on the boards 55-34 and having a 19-3 edge in bench scoring, shooting woes continued to plague the Judges as they shot just 28.6 percent (16-of-56) from the field in the game. The Judges would end up losing the game 53-48.

Kendrew once again led the Judges with 11 points, marking the seventh-straight game and 11th time in the last 12 games that she has been the team’s leading scorer; however, Kendrew was just 4-of-20 from the field, including 3-of-12 from beyond the arc in an extremely inefficient shooting performance. Forward Erica Higginbottom ’13 led the Judges’ dominating effort on the boards grabbing a career-high 11, including six on the offensive glass. The Judges had a 20-12 edge in offensive rebounds but could only muster an 18-14 advantage in second chance points. Their inability to convert their offensive rebounds into easy buckets loomed large as the Judges only lost by five points. Guard Diana Cincotta M.A. ’12 added seven points and a career-high four steals while forward Shannon Hassan ’12 contributed six points off of the bench.

Emory had four starters in double figures and were led by junior center Danielle Landry who had 12 points. The Judges were able to keep sophomore guard Hannah Lily, the UAA leading scorer, to a manageable 11 points and also held senior guard Melissa Koike to 11 points. Junior forward Misha Jackson chipped in 10 points for the Eagles and grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds with six of her boards coming on the offensive glass, half of Emory’s total offensive rebounds. Jackson also grabbed the most critical rebound after the Judges forced a stop in a three-point game. After securing the offensive board, Emory was able to reset their offense and try for another score. Jackson also led all players with six steals as Emory forced the Judges into an astounding 27 turnovers.

The Judges will close the season on a three-game home-stand starting with a matchup against 12th-ranked Washington University this Friday at 6 p.m. While the Judges haven’t been able to establish a consistent rhythm this season, they will look to close the season off on a three-game winning streak and take some momentum into the off-season.