Women’s Basketball Loses Three PL Contests



The Colgate women’s basketball team was looking for some redemption after starting the Patriot League ledger to a slow start. However no such redemption was found as the team suffered three tough loses against Lehigh, Bucknell, and Holy Cross by scores of 57-45, 60-47 and 65-56 respectively.

The game against Lehigh last Wednesday was expected to be a good one, as Lehigh is the defending Patriot League champion. Play was tight all throughout the first half, as once again the Colgate bench played inspired offense. Upon entering the game, sophomore guard Candice Green and senior guard Katie Garman both knocked down some quick three-pointers to give the Raiders an early 14-7 advantage.

The Mountain Hawks, however, came back, relying on the consistent shooting of Emily Gratch. Gratch scored all six of her first half points in the closing five minutes of the half. Her timely shooting was able to propel Lehigh to a 23-22 lead going into the half.

The action intensified in the second half. Lehigh amassed a seven-point lead during the first three minutes due to some forced Colgate turnovers. The Raiders found a niche after this offensive lapse however, and through the play of first-year guard Jhazmine Lynch and junior guard Sami Kozlowski, the Mountain Hawk lead was cut to two points at 44-42.

“We are a very deep team, which gives us a number of options that we can utilize against our opponents,” Head Coach Pamela Bass said. “We can attack our opponents in a variety of ways. Against Lehigh we could attack with a guard oriented line-up or a big line-up. Our depth also allows us to have fresh legs when our opponents, who are not as deep, get tired.”

From that point on, Lehigh utilized its size advantage to grab rebounds and pull away from Colgate. Grabbing rebounds on both ends of the floor allowed Lehigh to go on a 12-0 run and defeat the Raiders by a final score of 57-45. Lynch had 11 points and 8 assists and sophomore center Tricia Oakes had 8 points and 3 rebounds, shooting 34% from the floor.

After falling to the defending Patriot League champs, the women hit the road to play Bucknell. The Bison jumped out to an early 9-0 lead, but the Raiders were able to cut into that lead within a minute, making the score 11-9 in favor of Bucknell. The teams traded baskets until the Raiders were able to make it a one-point game. Bucknell’s Rachel Voss made a three-pointer and two timely lay-ups to give the Bison a seven-point lead at the break.

After halftime, Bucknell took a comfortable 13-point lead, until Kozlowski was able to spark a small-scale comeback. Kozlowski had a brilliant second half as she scored seven of her thirteen points in a mere four minutes. The comeback effort was crippled by a number of missed jumpers, rebound attempts and turnovers.

Kozlowski had a total of 13 points, going 5-15 from the floor, junior forward Krista Moser had 6 points along with a team-high seven rebounds and Oakes finished with 8 points and 6 boards.

“Sami plays hard. She had a stronger game defensively against Bucknell,” Coach Bass said. “This allowed her to stay aggressive on the offensive end and not have to worry about foul trouble. In addition, the aggressiveness and hard work of Sami’s teammates should not be overlooked. As a team we were aggressive in transition, so Bucknell did not have the luxury of focusing their defense around Sami. Working together as a team contributes to successful individual performances.”

While keeping play close and competitive in the first half, the women need to find a way to stay in the game throughout the second half. A pattern of late game mistakes has cost the team a number of opportunities for victory. The skill on this team is certainly present, but they need to focus on how to cut down on late game errors that leave them reeling late in the second period.

“As a team we are working hard to focus for 40 minutes and to end the first half stronger and use this momentum in the second half,” Coach Bass said. “We’re learning that we need to capitalize on opportunities throughout the ballgame rather than just focusing in on the second half. We are focusing on making every possession count throughout the game.”

Last night, Holy Cross defeated Colgate behind the deft shooting of Whitney Fremeau, who poured in 18 off 9-14 shooting. Meredith Ward and Amy Lepley each scored 11 for the Crusaders. For Colgate, Oakes led the way with 15 off the bench.