PRINCESS ANNE, Md.– The University of Maryland Eastern Shore women's basketball team travels to Norman (Okla.) to square off against # 20 Oklahoma this Sunday. Tip-off is 2 p.m. (EST) Two days later (12/17), the Lady Hawks head to ACC country to take on Virginia. Game-time is 7 p.m.
UMES fell to the Lady Monarchs of Old Dominion University, 82-57, despite keeping the game close in the second half until ODU's late surge would give them the victory. The Lady Hawks fought throughout the game, but the Lady Monarchs were too much as they ended the contest on a 26-12 run to win, 82-57.
Shawnee Sweeney (Chester, Va.) recorded 18 points and six boards while Jessica Long (Fort Washington, Md.) had 10 points and a team-high five assists. Alexis Udoji (Randolph, Mass.) registered eight points and 10 rebounds in the loss.
Both, Oklahoma and Virginia, meet UMES for the first-time in their program's history as the Lady Hawks look to end their two-game skid. For the Sooners, they enter Sunday afternoon's contest 6-3 overall and 4-1 at the Lloyd Noble Center. There only home lost came against #2 Duke, 94-85. The Sooners are led by Aaryn Ellenberg, averaging 20.2 points-per-game (ppg). So far this season, Ellenberg has notched two double-double performances along with a Big 12 Player of the Week honor.
For the Cavaliers, they began the season 3-1, including a 61-60 victory over Liberty. Since then, the team has lost four in a row, including a 73-55 home loss to Michigan. Three Cavaliers average double-digit points, led by Ataira Franklin (11.9). Prior to the season, Franklin received multiple preseason honors, including 2013-14 Blue Ribbon Panel All-ACC Preseason Team.
This season, the Lady Hawks rank among the conference leaders in several categories, including points-per-game (68.5), rebounds-per-game (49.9), and three-pointer-made-per-game (7.0). Long paves the way for the team, averaging 16.8 points-per-game (ppg) and 4.9 assists-per-game (apg). Udoji and Shanyce Stewart (Mount Vernon, N.Y.) are among the top 50 rebounders in the nation, averaging 10.5 and 10.3 boards-per-game, respectively. Udoji is also among the top shot-blockers in the country, averaging 2.5 blocks-per-game. Sweeney is the team's sharpshooter and ranks among the nation's best as she is currently 18th in the country in three-pointers-made-per- game (3.1).
On Dec. 21, the Lady Hawks' road trip continues as they face Mount St. Mary's before beginning conference play against South Carolina State (12/30). Tip-off versus the Mount is 1 p.m.