FAIRFAX, VA - The Lady Hawks will play their first game of the 2012-13 season at the Patriot Center on Tuesday for a 7 p.m. contest against George Mason. This is the first meeting between these two schools since 1997.
Tickets for the game are three dollars for general admission and $4.50 for VIP row. They can be purchased at the arena, calling the ticket office at 703-993-3270 or through George Mason's athletic web site.
UMES is coming off a 72-52 exhibition victory over Wilmington at home, while George Mason fell to Oakland 62-58 in its season opener on Friday.
• LADY HAWKS DEFEAT WILMINGTON IN EXHIBITION PLAY: Outrebounding Wilimington by 29, UMES beat the WIldcats 72-52 at the Hytche Athletic Center on Wednesday. Sha-Kiyla Finney led the Lady Hawks with 13 points, adding six rebounds. Taylor Thompson earned a double double to lead all newcomers with 10 points and 11 boards, while senior Karona Roach had 11 points and seven boards.
• RECAPPING LAST SEASON: With one of the best
defenses in Division I, the Lady Hawks finished at 8-8 in conference
play, the seventh time in eight seasons that UMES has gone .500 or
better in the MEAC, and 12-19 overall. UMES got the 6-seed in the MEAC
Tournament, defeating 11-seed Savannah State 51-28 in the best defensive
performance ever in the conference tournament. The Lady Hawks almost
pulled off the upset in the next round, narrowly falling to 3-seed
Florida A&M 50-48. Adobi Agbasi
finished as the all-time blocks leader in Lady Hawks history and third
in Division I in the 2011-12 season with 3.72 blocks per game, totaling
108. She led a defense that allowed just 53.9 points a game, 20th in
D-I, and a D-I 6th-best field goal percentage defense of 33.7%.
• SERIES HISTORY: UMES is 0-4 against George Mason, including a pair of road and home losses, and will play its first game against the Patriots since December 30th, 1997. The Lady Hawks will play three Colonial Athletic Association opponents, including Old Dominion and Towson. George Mason's next game vs. Morgan State will be its final game against a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference opponent.
• SCOUTING THE PATRIOTS: George Mason fell 62-58 to Oakland in its opening game of the year and will have its home opener on Tuesday. Jeri Porter, in her fifth season as head coach, helped the Patriots to a 15-16 record last season. Senior guard Amber Easter, a preseason 2nd-team All-CAA member, passed the career 1,000-point mark with a double double of 12 points and 10 rebounds vs. Oakland. Redshirt junior forward Janaa Pickard also contributed 12 points in the first contest.
• FOLLOW THE FRESHMEN: UMES comes into the season with one of the youngest rosters in the country. The Lady Hawks have nine freshmen on the roster, tying with Maine for the most freshmen on a D-I women's basketball team this season. The UMES freshmen, who hail from six different states, make up over half the roster with nine of the 16 players.
• MAROON AND GRAY NEED SOME SCORERS: The top four scorers from last season, Chelsea Sanders, Kwinnyata Mercer, Adobi Agbasi and Amber Cook, all finished their careers last year. The team lost over 78% of its scoring from last season into this year. The leading scorer among returners is senior Karona Roach, who averaged four points a game last year, followed by senior Sha-Kiyla Finney's 2.3 points a contest.
• UMES PREDICTED TO FINISH SIXTH IN MEAC: In the preseason predictions, UMES was picked to finish sixth in the MEAC after earning the 6-seed last season. MEAC runner-up Howard earned 15 first-place votes and is predicted to win the conference, while defending MEAC champion Hampton is picked to finished second.