New Year, Same Result for Women's Basketball

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

For its New Year’s resolution, the Muhlenberg women’s basketball team decided to share the wealth.

All 15 Mules who suited up scored, with 12 registering multiple field goals, as they moved to 10-0 for the fourth time in school history with an 87-38 win over Dickinson. The seventh double-digit victory of the season, coupled with Franklin & Marshall’s loss to Washington, put Muhlenberg in sole possession of first place in the Centennial Conference.

While the Mules were kind on offense, they were anything but on the other end. Muhlenberg set a school record with 12 blocked shots, including four from senior Kathleen Naddaff to help hold Dickinson to just 23 percent shooting for the night.

Kathleen Naddaff
Naddaff pulled down six rebounds and tied her career high with two assists.

“Coach always tells us to play hard defensively,” freshman Janelle Fleet said. “And tonight he really wanted us to come out hard and not let the layoff get to us. We have a lot of quick and strong players, and I think that really helped.”

Muhlenberg (10-0, 5-0) applied that pressure from the very start, holding Dickinson scoreless for the first 7:43. And when the Red Devils (1-10, 1-5) did score, the Mules continued to roll, closing the half on a 22-5 run.

The highlight of the run came during the waning stages of the run as senior Katy Rossino, who had attempted just 11 shots all season, connected on back-to-back midrange jumpers to help the Mules take a 40-11 lead into the break.

“You could say my New Year’s resolution is to shoot more,” said Rossino, who finished with four points, one off her season total entering the night. “Coach has been encouraging me to shoot more, and I just got some open looks.”

Laura Gregory
Gregory led the Mules with seven rebounds to go along with two steals.
Muhlenberg extended its lead to 30 on the first possession of the second half and cruised the rest of the way, which allowed the reserves to get valuable playing time.

Fleet set a career high with eight points, including a spinning, lunging layup around two defenders midway through the second half that drew wild cheers from the bench. And according to her, after suffering an injury during her senior season of high school, she cherishes every minute she gets.

“I get a little nervous when I get in the game,” Fleet said. “I haven’t really played in a year and a half, so whenever I get a chance to get on the floor I play as hard as I can. The nerves go away after a few minutes, and then I get in a groove.”

Fellow freshman Laura Gregory added seven points, while classmates Nicole Pepe and Abby Stenger added five apiece.

Senior Alexandra Chili and junior Kate Clawson led the Mules with nine points each.

The Mules were able to score 87 points despite not having a player reach double figures, which according to Fleet, shows just how deep and skilled the team is.

“Anybody can score on any night,” she said of the Mules, who shot 49.3 percent from the field to reach the 80-point mark for the sixth time this season. “We have 17 players that are all really good and can make shots. But it doesn’t really matter who scores as long as we win.”
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