Women’s basketball skids to start the season as they fall to 1-4 after loss to Roanoke. Losses to Salisbury and Roanoke have given the Marlins an 0-2 record in ODAC play. This young, inexperienced team is searching for an identity to start the season.
There are only four upperclassmen on the entire roster. Sabrina Jones and Danielle Lehner were the only two seniors to play in the Feb. 6 game against Roanoke. The Marlins lost by 62 points in a game that was never competitive. Suspensions due to university pandemic protocols and injuries have taken out some of the most experienced players on the team, leaving them in shatters on the court and it shows, with 35 turnovers in the loss.
This lack of experience has resulted in a poor start for the Marlins. Early on in the season, the Marlins are averaging around 50 points per game. This puts them in 9th place in regards to ODAC team scoring (the three teams behind them haven’t played a game yet). They are going to need to protect the basketball and score much more if they want to turn this season around.
Seniors Sierra Coleman, Sabrina Jones, and Danielle Lehner lead the squad as the few upperclassmen. They have played together for multiple seasons.
The freshman class makes up 10 out of the 17 players on the current roster. While the issues regarding this team are glaring, this group of women provides ample ground for growth. Sophomores Bianca Atkinson and Logan Carter earned starting roles during their freshman season and continue to hold them through the beginning of this season.
There are a few bright spots for this team early on in the season. Transfer Celeste Rucker is averaging 10 points per game while being one of the team leaders in minutes.
The team was lacking seven players from their most recent game against Roanoke, including their top two leading scorers this season, S’Zahria Jones and Adaje Williams. Both freshmen are averaging over 10 points per game to start their collegiate career with the Marlins.
Head Coach Liz Hudy has her work cut out for her in trying to right the ship in her second season with the team. The Marlins have a ton of young talent surrounding this roster, and the rest of the season will give a good indication how strong this freshman class will be over the next three years.
This team will continue to grow together throughout the season as the young players gain experience on the court. The Marlins are looking to bounce back in some upcoming ODAC matchups after their rough start.