Women's basketball comes home

By The Beacon | February 14, 2012 9:00pm

The women’s basketball team prepares for home games against Pepperdine and Santa Clara

(Courtesy of sfprocity.com)

By Kyle Cape-Lindelin, Staff Writer -- capelind13@up.edu

The new year has not treated the women's basketball season kindly with the team going 2-10 since the turn of the calender.

The Pilots are headed for another losing season with a 9-17 overall record, their only wins coming against San Francisco on Jan. 14 with a score of 78-74 and at LMU on Feb. 11 winning 80-63. Against LMU senior forward Natalie Day led the team with 18 points and nine rebounds while fellow senior point guard ReZina TecleMariam scored nine points and had four assists. TecleMariam's points put her at 999 career points, giving her the opportunity to reach 1,000 when the team returns home to play Pepperdine tonight at 7 p.m. or in the Chiles Center this Saturday on Feb. 18 versus Santa Clara at 7 p.m.

"The end of the season means a lot to us seniors, even if the season didn't turn out the way we wanted to," TecleMariam said. "These last couple home games are our last in Chiles so we want to put on a good show for our fans who have supported us."

One of the biggest problems the Pilots have faced this year is confidence on the road, where UP has only won against Hawaii and San Diego State during Rainbow Wahine Invitational in Hawaii on Nov. 18 and 20 and recently at LMU.

"Because our team is so young, we have problems at matching the energy we play with at home and transferring that to the road," Head Coach Jim Sollars said. "There have been a few games this year where I felt we would have won it if we were at home."

One of those games was against Pepperdine in Malibu, Calif. on Jan. 7, where the Pilots were unable to pull out a win despite having the lead until the end when they fell 66-63.

"This season has had a lot of downs so far," Sollars said. "We're a pretty young team going against some really good teams, but I feel we have grown a lot this year."

The Pilots have only have three seniors this year: TecleMariam, Day and guard NaKeisha Brown. The team also has five freshmen and four sophomores adding to the team's youth.

"Us younger girls really need to win out and play our hearts out for the seniors in these last few games," freshman guard Cassandra Brown said. "They have taught us so much and have worked so hard for this team that we owe it to them."

Pepperdine currently holds a 7-4 WCC record and sits fifth in conference standings while Santa Clara is two spots higher than UP with a 3-9 record.

"I feel both these games we should win at home," Day said. "I know us seniors have a lot to prove on our way out and the young players have a lot to prove about where there going to stand in the future."