Tuesday's Bucknell-UMBC women's basketball game has been cancelled due to weather.
What: Bucknell Bison (4-5) vs. UMBC Retrievers (1-8)
Where: Sojka Pavilion, Lewisburg, Pa.
When: Saturday, Dec. 10, 2013, 7 p.m.
Internet Video: BucknellBison.com
Radio: WVBU 90.5 FM
Internet Radio: BucknellBison.com
Live Stats: BucknellBison.com
With a Victory Over UMBC, Bucknell Would...
• Improve to 5-5.
• Improve to 4-1 in Sojka Pavilion this season.
• Take a 5-3 lead in the all-time series with UMBC and earn its first win over the Retrievers since Nov. 20, 1998.
• Give head coach Aaron Roussell his 20th win at the helm of the program.
• Improve to 80-60 all-time at Sojka Pavilion.
Last Meeting with UMBC - Dec. 4, 2010
• UMBC 63, Bucknell 57 (RAC Center)
• Shelby Romine scored a career-high 22 points and set a personal best with six 3-pointers, but Bucknell women’s basketball fell 63-57 to UMBC in RAC Arena in the last meeting between the two teams.
• Strong free throw shooting on the part of the Retrievers down the stretch erased the Bison’s double-digit lead and dropped Bucknell’s record to 2-5 on the year.
• An offensive push and strong defense kept Bucknell on the upside of the scoreboard throughout the second half. The Bison kept the Retrievers from hitting its shots like it had earlier in the game, and the tight coverage forced the Retrievers into .320 (8-for-25) shooting from the floor in the half.
• Momentum officially swung in the Retrievers’ favor with just over a minute remaining in the action. Tope Obajolu completed a three-point play at 1:17 to bring UMBC within one point, and Michelle Kurowski pushed them over the edge with a pair of free throws 13 seconds later. That put the Retrievers in front for good, 58-57.
• By the end of the game Kurowski had pulled in front in the scoring column with 25 points. The guard was 6-of-17 from the floor, but 11-of-12 from the free throw line, including 5-for-6 in the game’s final minute. Kurowski claimed a double-double with 11 rebounds as well. Erin Brown finished with 15 points, while Tope Obajolu had 11.
About the Retrievers
UMBC has struggled in the early part of the season, playing to a 1-8 record. The Retrievers’s lone win came against Eastern (59-50) in their season opener, but since that point the squad has dropped eight straight. The team most recently saw action against VCU, falling 75-55 at home.
UMBC is led by Sara 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.
History vs. UMBC
• Despite a 4-3 series lead, Bucknell has had some relatively average individual performances against UMBC. Only two Bison have ever reached double figures in rebounds against the Retrievers - Jennifer Burke finished with 18 boards in 1979, while Marie Kocornik had 12 in 1986. The duo also has Bucknell’s only two double-doubles in series history, as Kocornik totaled 21 points in the 1986 contest. Burke added 11 points in the scoring column in 1979.
• Jennifer Walz has Bucknell’s all-time scoring high against UMBC, totaling 30 in 1986. Stacey Spitko also had eight assists in that game. No Bison has ever recorded more than one blocked shot in a single game against the Retrievers.
• The most lopsided outcome in series history came in the teams’ first meeting in 1979 at the Pittsburgh-Johnstown Mountain Cat Classic. Bucknell came away the winner, 64-29, as UMBC shot just .183 (13-for-71) from the field and was outrebounded 70 to 39.
• With the help of two wins decided by more than 30 points (1979, 1995), Bucknell’s average margin of victory over UMBC is 21.3 points. UMBC’s wins have come by an average of 9.3 points per game.
• The Bison have never lost back-to-back games to the Retrievers.
History vs. America East
Prior to its 89-48 win over Binghamton on Nov. 14, the last time Bucknell faced an opponent from the American East conference was on Dec. 4, 2010 when it last played UMBC. The Bison fell 63-57 to the Retrievers in that matchup, but are 15-12 (.556) all-time against those squads currently in the America East. Bucknell has fared best against Albany, Binghamton and UMBC, winning four games against each of the three schools.
Last Time Out
The Bucknell women’s basketball team proved once again that it has the ability to fight through adversity, narrowing a 24-point deficit to six with 41 seconds to play, but it wasn’t quite enough, as the squad fell to Penn, 69-61, on Saturday afternoon in Sojka Pavilion. The Bison dropped to 4-5 on the season with the loss, while the Quakers improved to 3-2 with the win.
Shelby Romine led the Bison with a game-high 23 points, shooting .500 (6-12) from the field and connecting on 10-of-15 free throws while also handing out five assists. Audrey Dotson, who has scored in double-digits in each of Bucknell’s first nine games, contributed 13 points, while Claire Maree O'Bryan led the squad on the boards with eight rebounds.
In spite of moments of brilliance and constant defensive pressure by the Bison, the Quakers preserved a significant advantage through much of the half, leading 60-40 with just over eight minutes to play. A gutsy Bucknell team continued to battle however, allowing a crafty layup by McGurk to spark an impressive comeback attempt that fully demonstrated the team’s true colors.
With 2:51 on the clock, Sheaira Jones drained a three-pointer to slice the Quakers’ lead to 12, and the Bison ran with the momentum, holding the visitors scoreless while Romine whittled four more points off their lead.
Down by eight with 41 seconds on the clock, Dotson drew Stipanovich’s fifth foul and demonstrated her prowess on the line with two pinpoint throws, bringing her squad within six. Two misses from the line for the Quakers set the Bison up to draw even closer, but Dotson’s three-point attempt with 26.4 on the clock fell just short.
Bucknell shot 40.4 percent (19-of-47) from the field in the contest, while holding Penn to 39.1 percent (25-of-64). The Bison also held the advantage from long range and at the line, while the Quakers won the battle on the glass with a 42-32 edge.
Rookie of the Week
Megan McGurk was named Patriot League Rookie of the Week on Monday, earning her first career weekly award and becoming the second Bison to receive the honor this season. The guard was on fire from long range last week, shooting 4-of-5 from the 3-point line with a career-high 14 points, three rebounds and a pair of assists in Bucknell’s 78-62 victory over Towson on Wednesday night. She added five points on 2-of-2 from the floor while hitting her only 3-point try with two boards and a dish in Bucknell’s 69-61 loss to Penn.
Claire DeBoer is the other Bison freshman to be honored, earning the award on Dec. 2 after scoring a career-high 15 points on 7-of-11(.636) shooting, collecting eight rebounds and adding a pair of assists, blocks and steals in Bucknell’s 66-41 win over Youngstown State. The game was her second double-digit effort in a row, as she became the first Bison freshman in almost six years to register a double-double when she turned in 11 points and 10 rebounds in the team’s 72-59 win at Cornell on Saturday, Nov. 23. DeBoer also shot .500 (3-of-6) against NJIT last Saturday, contributing eight points to the Bison offense in a close game with the Highlanders, and came alive in the second half of Wednesday’s win over Towson, finishing with a 13-point performance.
Now there are more ways than ever to follow the Bison. In addition to the Bucknell women’s basketball account (@BucknellWBB), head coach Aaron Roussell (@CoachRous), assistant coach Christian Stefanopoulos (@CStef23), assistant coach Katie Adams (@CoachKAdams12) and assistant coach Mike Lane (@MLane417) are all on Twitter. Bucknell Women’s Basketball is also on Facebook.
For up-to-date information, videos and more for all of Bucknell’s teams, don’t forget @BisonSports on Twitter, facebook.com/BuckyBison and youtube.com/BucknellAthletics.
Bucknell will play its final non-conference game of the season on Saturday, Dec. 22 when the team travels to Farmville, Va. to take on Longwood in a 2 p.m. contest.