BALTIMORE – UMBC women's basketball hits the road for its first of four straight road games
on Tuesday, Dec. 10, when it travels to Lewisburg, Pa., to take on Bucknell. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. at Sojka Pavilion. All the action is available live on Q1370 radio or www.Q1370.com, with Paul Mittermeier calling the action.
SCOUTING THE RETRIEVERS (1-8): UMBC has dropped eight straight since winning its season-opener against Eastern. The Retrievers have struggled to get going in the early part of games, being outscored by 11.4 points per game in the opening halves this season. UMBC once again picked up its play in the second stanza of its latest contest, shooting 62.5 percent from the floor and outscoring VCU 36-33 in the half. Freshman forward Sara Tarbert led the Retrievers in scoring for the seventh time this season, scoring 12 points and pulling down seven rebounds in the 75-55 loss to the Rams. Junior guard Janelle Saling provided a spark off the bench for the Retrievers, knocking down three treys for a season-best nine points.
On the season, UMBC is outshooting its opponents, 40.3 percent to 38.4 percent from the floor, but the Retrievers are being outrebounded by eight boards a game and are turning the ball over 5.9 more times per game. Over the last four games, UMBC is averaging 22.0 giveaways per contest, leading to 103 points for the Retrievers' opponents.
UMBC is led by Tarbert, who ranks fourth in the America East in points (15.6) and rebounds (7.4), while also adding a team-best 3.0 assists per contest. Classmate Taylor McCarley has proved to be a viable second option for the Retrievers, scoring 8.6 points and adding 3.1 rebounds per contest. Sophomore center Bridget O'Donnell and freshman center Amanda Hagaman are both hitting at a high percentage from the floor, shooting 46.9 percent and 53.8 percent from the floor, respectively. O'Donnell is second on the team in rebounding average, corralling 3.9 boards a game, while Hagaman leads the team in offensive rebounds with 11.
SCOUTING THE BISON (4-5): Bucknell concludes a three-game home stretch with Tuesday's contest against the Retrievers. The Bison have won three of their last five games, but are 1-1 in their current homestand, having lost their latest matchup against Penn, 69-61, on Saturday, despite cutting a 24-point deficit to six with under a minute to play. Senior guard Shelby Romine shot 50 percent from the floor against the Quakers, notched a game-high 23 points and chipped in five helpers, while junior forward Audrey Dotson extended her streak of double-digit scoring to nine games.
Dotson is shooting a squad-best 49.5 percent from the floor, en route to scoring 17.7 points per game. Dotson also leads the team in rebounds (73) and blocks (14). Romine is also averaging in double-digit points, scoring 13.0 points per game, while also adding 5.4 rebounds and 4.4 assists.
INSIDE THE SERIES: The Retrievers take on Bucknell for the first time since Dec. 4, 2010. UMBC has won the last two meetings against the Bison, but trail the all-time series, 4-3. The Retrievers are 1-3 playing on Bucknell's home court.
ON THE HORIZON FOR THE RETRIEVERS: The Retrievers take a break for finals before continuing its four game road swing at Loyola (Md.) on Dec. 21. UMBC takes eight more days off for the holidays and then travels to the James Madison Tournament on Dec. 29 and 30. The Retrievers open the tournament against Norfolk State on Sunday, Dec. 29.