The UMBC women's basketball team (9-9, 2-3 America East) concludes its brief two-game road trip Saturday afternoon at America East rival New Hampshire (6-10, 1-3 AEC). Game time is 1 p.m. at Lundholm Gymnasium.
RETRIEVER UPDATE: UMBC is coming off a 58-45 loss to defending America East champion Hartford on Wednesday. The Retrievers led for most of the first half before the Hawks took the lead at the end of the period, and UMBC's shooting went cold in the second stanza. Senior forward Sharri Rohde leads the team with 14.3 ppg and 6.9 rpg. The Retrievers rank second in the league in field goal percentage defense and third in scoring defens, and they rank 20th in the nation in turnovers per game. UMBC is currently tied with Maine for fifth in the America East standings at 2-3 in conference play. Junior forward Amanda Robinson is averaging 15.6 ppg in five league contests.
WILDCAT UPDATE: The New Hampshire Wildcats are 6-10 on the season and 1-3 in the America East after picking up its first conference victory of the year, 58-55 in overtime over Binghamton on Wednesday. Danielle Clark and Whitney Edwards led the team with 16 points and 7 rebounds apiece. Clark leads the Wildcats with 13.3 ppg and 5.4 rpg on the season, and she is averaging 15.0 ppg in four America East contests.
Inside the Series: Saturday's game marks the seventh all-time meeting between UMBC and New Hampshire, and the Wildcats hold a 4-2 series advantage. The first meeting occurred on Jan. 21, 2004, a 65-54 victory for visiting UNH. The Retrievers took the next game, 48-47, on Feb. 19, 2004, at Lundholm Gymnasium, but the Wildcats won the next three. UMBC did win the last contest, 65-53 at RAC Arena. As conference rivals, the teams have met twice a year since UMBC joined the league in 2004, and the Retrievers are 1-3 at Lundholm Gymnasium.
In the last meeting, Feb. 4, 2006, the Retrievers came away with a 65-53 victory at RAC Arena, extending their win streak to four in a row. UMBC forward Sharri Rohde led all scorers with 18 points and nine rebounds, while point guard Brittnie Hughes added 14. Danielle Clark led the Wildcats with 13 points but was held scoreless in the second half.
For Starters: The Retrievers have lost three of their last four games after a four-game winning streak. At 2-3 in conference play, UMBC is off to its best league start since joining the America East in 2003-04.
Rohde Passes 1,000: With 10 points against Stony Brook, senior forward Sharri Rohde became the 15th player in UMBC history to score 1,000 points in her career. She is currenly tied with Eunice French ('95) for 12th all-time with 1,041 points. Next on her list is Mickey Stoffel ('86) with 1,051.
Rohde's Start Streak: Senior forward Sharri Rohde started all 28 games last season for the third year in a row. With a start in each of the first 18 games this season, she has extended her start streak to 102 games and ranks fourth all-time at UMBC for career starts. Rohde is on pace to break UMBC's record for most career starts on Feb. 7 at Stony Brook.
Join the Club: Senior forward Sharri Rohde is just the 10th Retriever ever to reach both the 1,000-point and 500-rebound plateau, and she is the 13th player in UMBC history to amass 500 boards. With nine rebounds at Hartford on Wednesday, she took sole possession of 12th place all-time with 542 career boards. Next on her list is Missy Quille ('94) with 656.
Robinson Stays Hot: Junior forward Amanda Robinson has averaged 15.6 ppg in five America East contests this season, seventh-best in the conference.
Seeing Double: Senior forward Sharri Rohde has scored in double figures in each of her last 10 games - the second-longest streak in the conference - and 16 out of 18 overall, while junior guard Kristin Drabyn has reached double digits in 11 of her last 15 games and 12 times overall. Senior point guard Brittnie Hughes has also reached the 10-point plateau 12 times this season, including six of the last eight, while junior forward Amanda Robinson had her four-game double-figure scoring streak snapped Wednesday night at Hartford.
America East Opener: The Retrievers' 66-58 victory over Boston University in its America East opener marked the first time UMBC has won its America East opener since joining the league in 2003-04 and also marked the Retrievers' first victory in their first conference game of the season since 1997-98 when members of the Big South.
Coaching Milestones: Last Saturday's victory over Binghamton was head coach Phil Stern's 50th at UMBC and the 144th of his career. He is just six shy of reaching the 150-victory milestone.
Lending a Helping Hand: The Retrievers rank third in the America East and 91st in the NCAA with 14.28 assists per game, and senior point guard Brittnie Hughes leads the league and ranks 62nd in the nation with 4.56 apg. UMBC dished out a season-high 26 assists on Dec. 2 at Fairleigh Dickinson, just one shy of the school record of 27 set against Shippensburg on Dec. 2, 1985. Hughes (7) and senior forward Sharri Rohde (8) combined for 15 of the team's 26 assists in the game.
Helping Hand, Part II: Senior point guard Brittnie Hughes and senior forward Sharri Rohde are UMBC's active career leaders in assists with 301 and 291, respectively. Hughes ranks seventh all-time, while Rohde ranks ninth. Rohde entered the season with 22 more dishes in her career than Hughes, but the point guard has averaged 4.56 helpers per game this season, with a career-best 12 on Dec. 29 against Texas State to gain the lead.
Big D: One of the stingiest defenses in the America East conference, UMBC ranks second in the league and 45th in the NCAA in field goal percentage defense (.372) and ranks third the conference and 74th in the nation in scoring defense (59.3 ppg). The Retrievers have held opponents below 20 points in a half five times this season - Dec. 29 against Texas State (15/1st), Dec. 9 at Longwood (16/1st), Nov. 21 vs. Towson (17/1st), Dec. 28 against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (18/1st) and Jan. 13 against Binghamton (18/1st). Similarly, UMBC has held opponents below 20 percent shooting in a period in four games - Nov. 26 vs. NJIT (16.7 percent/2nd), Dec. 28 vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (17.9 percent/1st), Dec. 29 vs. Texas State (18.2 percent/1st) and Dec. 9 at Longwood (18.5 percent/1st).
Three's Company: Junior guard Kristin Drabyn leads the America East and ranks 93rd in the nation with 2.11 three-pointers made per game. Drabyn drilled nine of 18 triples in two games at the Battle at the Border Tournament, including a career-high six against Texas State on Dec. 29. It was the most three-pointers made by a Retrievers since Ana Goncharova connected on nine on Jan. 29, 2005 against Stony Brook. As a team, UMBC ranks third in the America East and 69th in the NCAA in three-pointers made per game (5.61). Senior point guard Brittnie Hughes is shooting 41.3 percent from long distance, third-best in the conference, and ranks 10th with 1.44 treys per game.
Block Party: Junior forward Amanda Robinson blocked a season-high five shots - one off her career high - on Dec. 29 against Texas State. She ranks third in the conference with 1.39 bpg and has blocked 15 shots in her last six games. Senior forward Sharri Rohde, UMBC's active blocks leader, ranks fifth all-time with 79 career blocks, while Robinson moved into a tie for sixth place all-time with 74 after recording three against Hartford.
Master Thieves: Senior forward Sharri Rohde senior point guard Brittnie Hughes are UMBC's active leaders in steals. Both rank among the America East's leaders in the category, with Hughes fifth (1.94 spg) and Rohde 10th (1.56 spg). Rohde has averaged 2.20 steals in five conference games this season, fourth-best in the league. She ranks 13th all-time with 130, while Hughes moved into a tie for 14th with 127 after notching four steals at Hartford. The Retrievers rank fourth as a team with 8.72 steals per game, but are second in conference games with 10.00 per contest.
Drabyn for Three: In her third season at UMBC, junior shooting guard Kristin Drabyn is moving up a number of UMBC charts involving three-pointers. Drabyn currently ranks third all-time with a .346 career shooting percentage from long distance and ranks ninth with 64 career three-point field goals. In addition, Drabyn's 38 triples and 121 attempts this season rank fourth among all-time Retriever juniors.
America East Recognizes Retrievers: Two Retrievers have earned America East Player of the Week recognition this season. Senior forward Sharri Rohde earned the honor for the third time in her career on Dec. 3 after averaging a double-double the previous week, while junior guard Kristin Drabyn won the award for the first time on Jan. 2 after averaging 19.0 ppg and shooting 56.5 percent (13-for-23) from the field, including 50 percent (9-for-18) from long distance at the Battle at the Border Tournament.
Double Vision: Four of UMBC's five starters scored in double figures in UMBC's first two conference games, including junior forward Amanda Robinson (22/14), senior forward Sharri Rohde (14/10), senior point guard Brittnie Hughes (12/15) and junior guard Kristin Drabyn (12/13). It was the third and fourth time this season that at least four players have scored in double digits, as they same four did it at Rider on Dec. 19, and freshman guard Carlee Cassidy joined them against NJIT on Nov. 26 to make five Retrievers with at least 10 points apiece.
Double-Double: The Retrievers posted three double-doubles in two games to start the month of December. Senior forward Sharri Rohde recorded the third and fourth of her career with 17 points and 10 rebounds at American on Nov. 28, and 23 points and 10 boards at Fairleigh Dickinson on Dec. 2. Junior forward Amanda Robinson also posted a double-double against the Knights, scoring a career-high 22 points and grabbing a career-best 12 rebounds. Prior to that week, no UMBC player had recorded a double-double since March 4, 2006, when Robinson scored 11 points and grabbed 11 rebounds at Albany. Rohde posted her third double-double of the season on Dec. 28 against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi with 17 points and a career-high 12 rebounds.
At the Line: The Retrievers rank seventh in the America East in free throw percentage (.690); but after shooting a season-worst 48.4 percent from the charity stripe against Navy on Dec. 6, UMBC has shot better than 70 percent in eight of its last 10 games, including a season-best 87 percent (20-for-23) against Boston U. Senior forward Sharri Rohde ranks 10th in the America East at 73.4 percent. Junior guard Kristin Drabyn is 22-for-24, but missed a foul shot against Binghamton for the first time since the season opener against George Washington. She had made 20 in a row. Senior point guard Brittnie Hughes is shooting 90.5 percent (19-for-21) from the charity stripe in five conference games, third-best in the league.
20/20: There have been eight 20-point performances by Retrievers this year, three by senior forward Sharri Rohde, who reached the 20-point plateau in two consecutive games earlier this month. Senior point guard Brittnie Hughes and junior forward Amanda Robinson have each done it twice, while junior guard Kristin Drabyn has also accomplished the feat. Rohde and Hughes have each scored a team-high 23 this season.
On the Glass: Senior forward Sharri Rohde ranks fourth in the America East Conference with 6.9 rebounds per game, nearly two more rebounds per contest than her career average entering the season. Junior forward Amanda Robinson also ranks 15th in the league with 5.4 rpg. However, the Retrievers have been out-rebounded by nine boards per game this season, the worst margin in the conference, and have only won the rebounding battle three times.
Hoosier State Trio: Three Retrievers hail from Indiana, and all three are finding regular playing time. Senior forward Sharri Rohde leads the team with 14.3 ppg and 6.9 rpg and has started 102 games in a row. Junior guard Kristin Drabyn has started every game so far this season and is averaging 10.6 ppg, while senior Heather Luttrell has started five games and is averaging 21.4 minutes in 18 contests.
UMBC Picked Sixth in Preseason Poll: The Retrievers were selected to finish sixth in the America East in a vote of the conference's head coaches, the program's highest preseason billing since joining the America East in 2003. In a crowded middle-third of the conference, UMBC is just four points out of fourth place.