Despite receiving 22 points from junior guard Sarah Olson, the women’s basketball team fell to the Siena Saints, 65-58, Saturday, Feb. 7.
Olson lit it up from beyond the arc in the second half, when she knocked down five triples after only hitting one in the first 20 minutes of play.
Her second half barrage was a high point for the Hawks, but Head Coach Jenny Palmateer sees more in Olson than just her shooting ability. “She’s showed up for us every single game,” said Palmateer. “I think her value, as great as it is in the scoring column, is just as valuable in all the other areas.”
The Hawks jumped out to an early nine-point lead in the opening minutes of the game, with the big key being the full court press defense for MU causing multiple turnovers, which lead to points on the offensive end. The Hawks finished the game with eleven steals and six blocks, which lead to 17 points.
MU continues to yield three-point shots no matter the situation. Shooting 10-31 from deep helped them stay in the game at crucial moments and their three point performance almost brought them victory
That tide quickly changed as Siena started causing the Hawks to commit turnovers. The Saints started knocking down shots as leading scorers Margot Hetzke and Tehresa Coles respectively had 16 apiece. Despite going 4-14 from three point territory, the Saints hit two big three’s during the heart of the game which shifted the momentum.
Sophomore guard Jamiyah Bethune went 6-8 from the foul line giving the Hawks easy points from the charity stipe. Junior forward Amanda Offenback was impressive in her fifth straight start, as she knocked in two three’s and finished with 12 total points.
Siena felt the comeback in the works, but quickly answered with two clutch three balls from Ida Krogh, who finished with 10 points, five assists and three steals.
Although Siena made a loud appearance during the second half, MU made sure not to back down. At one point during the second half, the Hawks were down by 15, but managed to claw their way back to bring the game within two.
“I thought we showed some toughness and fight,” said Palmateer. “We played Monmouth Basketball.”
The Hawks remained consistent and played wire-to-wire trying to mount a comeback. Regardless of the run, the Saints held on to improve their record to 14-9, and 7-7 in the MAAC.
“We had gotten ourselves in quite a bit of a hole, but we were able to get back into the game,” Palmateer said.
Despite injuries earlier this season, sophomore guard Helena Kurt hustled throughout the game as she ran up and down the court trying to cause turnovers. She was not the only one; every Hawk was persistent to play every second of the game no matter the score.
With the loss, the Hawks move to seventh in the MAAC and post an overall record of 9-14 (5-9 MAAC).
The Hawks return home Friday, Feb. 13 to take on rival Rider in a MAAC battle for NJ bragging rights. Rider is currently on a two game losing streak and has an overall record of 7-16 (4-9 MAAC).