By Dylan Calloway
The women’s basketball team fell 81-76 last Tuesday, Nov. 22, in a close match against Rutgers University-Camden, who are currently tied for first in the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC). The game was the opening conference match-up for both schools.
Turnovers and fouls were a factor in the loss, with the Raptors scoring 18 points as a result of turnovers, and converting 20 free throw attempts. A stand out performance by Raptors junior forward/center Michelle Obasi was also a factor, who scored 28 points, grabbed eight rebounds and snatched four steals.
Despite the loss, there were some quality takeaways for the Lions, including an outstanding double-double recorded by junior guard Charlotte Schum, in which she tallied 19 points and snagged 17 rebounds. Freshman forward Jen Byrne also recorded 18 points in her third collegiate game. Lions head coach Dawn Henderson had words of praise for the young starter.
“Jen Byrne is an outstanding player,” Henderson said. “We are expecting big things from her. She is very versatile. She can compete inside and hit the three outside.”
After starting off the season with a win in the first round of the Gwynedd Mercy Tip-Off Tournament against Salisbury University, the Lions stumbled, losing their past two games and putting themselves in last place in the NJAC. Henderson is still very optimistic despite the slow start.
“We are working to be in the NJAC Playoffs, with a chance to win it all and get to the NCAA Tournament,” Henderson said.
Junior forward Nikki Schott was also named Student Athlete of the Week by the College for her performance in the tournament.
“Nikki is playing very well this season,” Henderson said. “She is being more physical on both ends of the floor. She is a great athlete and should continue to impact the team.”
Nikki scored a total of 29 points and contributed a total of four blocks, five assists and 15 rebounds. She was also named to Gwynedd’s All-Tournament team.
The Lions head on the road to play Stockton University on Wednesday, Nov. 30, hoping to set themselves up for a climb back to the top of the conference. The Ospreys are currently tied for first in the NJAC along with Rutgers University-Camden and Montclair State University. After that game, the Lions come back to Packer Hall on Saturday, Dec. 3, to challenge Kean University at 1 p.m.