From my last blog until now, we played four games. Our season started off with an away game against The University of Hartford in Connecticut. Although we did not play as well as we had hoped, Hartford has a great basketball program and we learned a lot of valuable things from our loss. The first-year players were also able to experience what it was like staying in a hotel and traveling on the road. I was lucky enough to get freshman, Jeneh Perry as a roommate for the first road trip. The game ended with a score of 64-50 Hartford.
We headed home the morning after the game to prepare for our home opening game against fifth-ranked Maryland, which would be the following day. We are fortunate enough to play UMD every year. A team that is always ranked one of the top teams in the country. Going into the game against UMD, we knew both physical and mental strength needed to be present the entire time. If one of those were lacking, Maryland would blow us away within minutes.
After hanging on for most of the first half and giving it all we had, Maryland was still able to leave Reitz with a victory. The final score was 80-45.
The team was given the following day off to rest our bodies and take an academic day to catch up on some work before our next game which was that coming Saturday against UMBC. UMBC is a team we also play every year and since I have been here, each year had been a loss for the greyhounds. UMBC is a local rival that always tests our abilities on the court. I was particularly excited this year because one of my old high school teammates plays basketball for the UMBC Retrievers as a freshman center.
As a whole, we played extremely well. We were able to have 18 assists (Katie with ten alone) and only 10 turnovers (which might be an all-time low for us). Nicole shot unbelievably well during the game, shooting 5 for 8 from three and recorded her first collegiate double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds. We executed the offense well, got stops on defense, and came home with our first win of the season with a final score of 68-55.
Our last game before Thanksgiving break was against the Midshipmen of the Naval Academy on Tuesday night. Navy, another team whom we play every year, won the patriot league last spring. Because Loyola is joining the patriot league next year, this game would be a test for us to see how we can hold up against our future opponents. Coach Logan warned us that in previous years, we normally play terribly in the games right before a holiday break and that we would need to really focus and understand that our break begins after the final buzzer goes off. Unfortunately the poor performance curse continued against Navy. We played terribly and did not show the patriot league what we were capable of doing. We dug ourselves a hole in the first half and were unable to climb our way out completely. The final score was 71-60.
I just got back to Baltimore from being home for a couple of days and I know that I, as well as the rest of my team, will be ready to work in practice tonight. Our next game will be held in Reitz Arena this Sunday against Towson at 2pm. If you are in the area, come out and support the hounds. It will be another local rivalry game and will be totally worth the trip. I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and I hope to see you Sunday.