The Shore drops first of the season at Buffalo
BUFFALO, New York -
University of Maryland Eastern Shore head coach Fred Batchelor knew his team couldn’t afford to have a slow start on Monday night against The University at Buffalo (2-0).
Unfortunately, that’s exactly what happened as the Hawks (1-1) dug themselves into a 21-4 hole after the first quarter that they were never able to dig out of despite their best efforts.
“I thought we played two quarters out of four that were good,” Batchelor said. “The second quarter after down and in the fourth quarter I challenged them to win it and we lost it by two (14-12). I thought we showed some fight — particularly on the defensive end.”
The Shore turned the ball over 12 times in the first quarter and the Bulls scored 16 points off those turnovers. The Hawks also shot just 1-of-10 form the field in the first.
“We just shot ourselves in the foot a few times offensively and it had a lot to do with their defense,” Batchelor said. “They do a good job of getting in passing lanes with athleticism and anticipating where the pass is going to me made and make it really difficult for you.”
Eastern Shore managed to find some offense in the second quarter and was outscored just 20-17 to head to the half trailing 41-21.
The Bulls sent players in waves at the Hawks with everyone on the roster playing double-digit minutes similar to what the Hawks did on Friday against Valley Forge. The fast pace of BU on offense and in transition as well as a dogged defensive effort eventually wore on the Hawks.
“I’m sure it did,” Batchelor said. “Not only were they on condition, but they get up and down the floor pretty quickly. And they have a great point guard. (Stephanie Reid) just makes things difficult o the defensive end. When we went to do some things — a 2-2-1 to try and contain her she knew it was a gimmick and she attacked it. She knew it was a gimmick and she just attacked it.
“She’s a special little guard. I think she gets them going and we made our run while she was out of the game.”
Some of the younger Eastern Shore players seemed a little shell shocked to start the contest, but seemed to have grown more comfortable by the end of the contest.
“We are dealing with six new players (4 freshmen) and our first road game which is always a challenge against a very, very, very good team. I said three verys because they are that good. That’s why they were picked to finish No. 1 in the Mid-American Conference and they are coming off 22 wins last year.”
Freshman Amanda Carney (Parlin, New Jersey) led the team in scoring off the bench with 11 and had four steals, while senior Alexus Hicks (Raleigh, North Carolina) chipped in 10 points and five boards.
Senior center Tori Morris (Herndon, Virginia) led the team on the boards with nine against a big Bulls front line.
“I thought Tori showed a lot of spirit,” Batchelor said. “I think that was the first time I have seen her show so much spirit and get upset with officials and some calls and feeling like things should have gone her way. I’m pleased to see it, but Tori is coming off her first year in our program. With developing some patience and giving the new girls some confidence then lord willing we’ll improve.”
The Hawks gave up 36 points off turnovers, shot 22.2 percent from the field and were outscored in the paint 34-14. The Bulls backup outscored the Hawks reserves 49-16.
“I thought they put us on our heels and took advantage of it for 40 minutes. Hopefully we learned something from this,” Batchelor said. “I thought they were the better team tonight, but I also felt like they played harder than we did.
“And that can’t happen.”
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