womens basketball picking up steam

Women’s Basketball Team Picking Up Steam

Hawks Have Won Their Last Seven Games After Starting 3-8

womens basketball picking up steamThe saying “there’s no place like home” could not have been truer for the Lady Hawks basketball team this break. While most of the students of the University were rewarded with a winter break, the same could not be said about their team. From December 21 to January 16, the women competed in six games. Heading into the month-long break, the women held a losing record of 3-8. By January 15, the Hawks managed to improve their record to an even 8-8 by winning five consecutive games.

The first team the women opposed over break was a 5-5 Norfolk State on December 29. Having home court advantage, the women were able to pass Norfolk 69-62. Although the Hawks did win, it was difficult to tell the outcome during the first half of the game. Both teams were consistent in their play during the first half which lead to a fairly close game at half time with Monmouth having a mere five-point advantage. The second half was much like the first, a game of ups and downs for the two teams.

It was not until the last two minutes of play did it become apparent that Monmouth was the dominating team. The key player of that game was junior wing Chevannah Paalvast. She had a career-high 16 points along with four assists.

The team next hosted the Wildcats from Villanova University in which the crowd of 512 people may have seen the most up in the air game the women have had to date. Both teams kept their offense sharp during the first half and their defense even sharper. By halftime, Monmouth was leading Villanova 27-20.

Villanova bounced back and within six minutes of the second half, they were able to make Monmouth’s lead only four points. The Hawks stayed strong and with about two minutes left on the clock, they were leading the game 49-42. Villanova pushed their offense to full force and with 50 seconds left to play, all they needed was a field goal to tie up the game. Luckily for the Hawks, Villanova only scored a basket making the final score 49-48 in Monmouth’s favor.

After extending their winning streak to two games, the women then faced Wagner College who then held a record of 2-11. High-lights of the game were Paalvast hitting double digits in points for her third straight game along with Alexis Canady scoring 15 points. Excluding the first minute of play, the women were able to stay ahead of Wagner for the entire game. Safe to say, the women soundly won with a final score of 65-42 boosting their record to 6-8.

Closing out the Hawks home stand on January 9 was a Mount St. Mary, a team with an equal re-cord as Monmouth. Since the two teams seemed evenly matched, it was hard to determine the outcome for the first 15 minutes of play. But at the five-minute mark, the Hawks pulled ahead to a seven-point lead. The women were able to sustain their lead and secure a 59-52 win making their record one-win short of .500. The Hawks then traveled to Long Island on January 14 and St. Francis on January 16. Defeating Long Island 67-57 and St. Francis 53-44, Monmouth brought their record to a game over .500 for the first time all season.

On January 21, the team came back to West Long Branch in or-der to host a 9-8 Robert Morris as their opponent. Although the girls won that game 75-66, the real headlines were junior guard Alysha Womack for scoring a career-high 27 points to aid the women in their win. With this victory against Robert Morris, the girls currently are two games over .500 with a 10-8 record. The women are half way done their season at this point and have some tough teams to face in their future. Upcoming games include Bryant on January 28 away, rival Central Connecticut State away on January 30, and Quinnipiac at home on February 4.