PRINCESS ANNE, Md.- The University of Maryland Eastern Shore women's hoops team is preparing to head to Norfolk to play against the Lady Monarchs of Old Dominion University Saturday night at the Ted Constant Convocation Center. Tipoff is at 7 p.m.
On Tuesday, The Lady Hawks came up short to Monmouth University, 67-65, despite outscoring the team in the second half, 37031. After trailing at halftime, 36-28, Shawnee Sweeney (Chester, Va.) made back-to-back three-pointers to narrow the gap to four points, 38-34. UMES later took the lead 61-60 with over three minutes in the game, but Monmouth rallied to finish the game on a 7-4 run to win the game, 67-65.
Four Lady Hawks finished in double-figures, led by Sweeney with 13. Alexis Udoji (Randolph, Mass.) tallied her fifth-career double-double with 10 points and 11 boards. Chalyse Taylor (Louisville, Ky.) marked 12 points while TeAmber Burke (Washington, N.C.) came off the bench to score 10 points in the loss.
In preparation for Saturday night's showdown, UMES comes in 3-4 overall, while ODU has a 4-4 record with a two-game winning streak, including wins over Boston University and Umass-Lowell. This is the third meeting between the two teams, dating back to 2011. The series is tied for all-time, 1-1, with both teams winning on the road. The Lady Hawks beat Old Dominion in 2011 at the Ted Constant Center, 63-59, led by Chelsea Sanders and Adobi Agbasi combining for 41 points. In 2012, the Lady Monarchs came to the William P. Hytche Athletic Center to tie the series after a 62-46 victory over UMES.
Karona Roach and Sha-Kiyla Finney led the way for the Lady Hawks, tallying 26 points between the two of them. Eight UMES players participated in last season's game against ODU. Sweeney, Jessica Long (Fort Washington, Md.,) and Shanyce Stewart (Mount Vernon, N.Y.) are the only Lady Hawks to compete in both games against the Lady Monarchs. Old Dominion was predicted to finish sixth this season in their first season as members of Conference-USA, led by Shae Kelley and Stephanie Gardner. Kelley averages a double-double while leading the team with 16.9 and 11.5 rebounds. Before the season, Kelley was named to the Conference-USA Preseason Team. Gardner is second on the team scoring 11.9 and tallying 40% as her three-point percentage. The Lady Hawks continue to remain among the conference leaders in several categories including points-per-game with 70.1, rebounds-per-game with 51.1 and three-pointers-made-per-game with 7.3. Long leads the Hawks attack, averaging 17.7 points-per-game and 4.9 assists-per-game. Long is also died for the lead in the Mid-Eastern Atlantic Conference in assists-to-turnover ratio with 1.4. Udoji and Stewart are among the top rebounders in the conference, averaging 10.6 and 10.5 boards-per-game, respectively. Sweeney continues her hot streak topping the conference in three-pointers-per-game with 3.0.
After Saturday's match-up, the Lady Hawks have eight more days before they continue their seven-game road trip. On Dec. 15, UMES travels to Norman (Okla.) where they will face off against #15 Oklahoma. Tip-off is at 2 p.m. Two days later, the Lady Hawks will head to ACC country to play Virginia. Game-time is 7 p.m. For complete recaps, results and news of Hawks athletics, visit http://www.umeshawks.com.