Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet


The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Women host Baltimore County

The women’s basketball team kicks off its regular season Friday afternoon in the Smith Center against the University of Maryland-Baltimore County. It is also the first game of the regular season for the Retrievers.

UMBC, a member of the America East Conference, is coming off a 15-13 record and 7-9 in-conference mark. The squad returns 11 players, including four starters.

The Colonials will need to watch for senior Sharri Rohde, one of the team’s three captains and a 2006 America East Second-Team All-Conference selection. The four-year starter averaged 12.4 points per game, 6.4 rebounds per game and a 57.1 field goal percentage during her junior campaign.

The Retrievers lost their top shooter from last season, graduated senior Matea Pender, who led the team with 12.6 points per game while shooting 40.8 percent from behind the arc. Junior Kristin Drabyn, who averaged only 4.6 points per game despite shooting 40.6 percent from downtown, will replace Pender. In comparison, junior Sarah-Jo Lawrence, the Colonials’ leading scorer last season, averaged 11.6 points per game, while junior Kim Beck, who led GW in outside shooting, shot 34.4 percent from three-point range.

“We’ve been working on the little things that we need to improve on to get better as a team,” Lawrence said. “We’ve been practicing up, knowing that we’re starting the season and that these games are going to count.”

The Retrievers led the America East in assists and were 22nd nationwide in assists per game last season behind senior Brittnie Hughes, another captain. The point guard finished second in the conference with 4.21 assists per game. Senior Heather Luttrell, the team’s final captain, has played every position on the court but will likely start this season as a forward, according to the UMBC Athletics Web site.

Lawrence said that experience should also benefit the Colonials.

“The fact that we have a lot of people back, people that have game experience and NCAA experience, that’s really going to help us out this year, with Baltimore County and with everyone else,” Lawrence said. “We’re trying to get those young guys in and coming up to the level we’re at.”

UMBC also boasts two height threats in 6-foot-2 center Mackenzie Butler and 6-foot-3 forward Amanda Robinson. Butler, a sophomore, had 19 blocks last season in just 12 games while Robinson, a junior, ranked sixth in the America East with 31 blocks in 25 games.

“We’ve played two preseason games already and neither of them counted; finally, our season is starting on Friday,” Lawrence said. “We’re excited.”

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