The Merrimack women's basketball team returns home after dropping their last conference road game to the UMass Lowell Riverhawks by the score of 80-67. With the loss, Merrimack drops to 4-2 overall and 2-2 in conference play, winning their only home contest this year. The Saint Michael Purple Knights enter the contest with a 1-5 overall mark and 0-4 conference record after dropping their last contest at Stonehill by the score of 56-50. Merrimack looks to break a 5-way tie for the seventh with a win while the Purple Knights aim for their first conference win.
The Warriors offensive attack has been very spread out this season as they have had four players lead the team in scoring through six games. Senior Kelly Schatzlein leads the Warriors in rebounding averaging 10.3 rebounds to go along with 10.5 points per game. Sophomore point guard Chloe Rothman leads the Warriors in scoring as she is averaging 10.7 points, 5.4 assists and 3.3 rebounds per contest. Senior Jaclyn Lyons is playing well for the Warriors as she is averaging 9.8 points per game and shooting 44 percent from the floor. Junior transfer Shelby Secor has impressed early on as she is averaging 7.3 points and 5.3 rebounds while starting all six games while fellow newcomer Ashley Weissmann is coming off the bench and averaging 7.7 points and 3.0 rebounds so far.
ABOUT THE COMPETITION:
The Purple Knights enter the contest with a 1-5 overall record and 0-4 conference mark. They are led offensively by Nicole Adach who is averaging 18.0 points and 7.5 rebounds per game while shooting 58 percent from the floor. Senior captain Megan Olsen is averaging 11.2 points and 4.43 rebounds for the Purple Knights while freshman Makenzie Burud is averaging 7.8 points and 5.5 rebounds in her first season. As a team, the Purple Knights are averahing 62.5 points per game while shooting 40 percent from the floor, 31 percent from the three point line and 74.7 percent from the charity stripe.
The Warriors are 25-30 against the Purple Knights all-time including splitting two matchups last season. The Warriors lost by 20 on the road to the Purple Knights and beat them by 20 on Bert Hammel Court last season.
LAST GAME (MERRIMACK 67 - UMASS LOWELL 80):
The Merrimack women's basketball team was downed on the road by the UMass Lowell Riverhawks by the score of 80-67 on Saturday afternoon. The Warriors were held to 29.2 percent from the floor and committed 24 turnovers which led to 22 UMass Lowell points. Merrimack captain Kelly Schatzlein recorded her second straight double-double in the loss as she scored 10 points and grabbed a team-high 11 rebounds. Junior Shleby Secor had her best game since joining the Warriors as she produced her first career double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds while freshman Ashley Weissmann scored a career-high 13 points to lead Merrimack offensively.
SCHATZLEIN NOTCHES 1,000th CAREER POINT IN LOSS:
In the Warriors loss on Saturday, senior forward Kelly Schatzlein became the 18th player in program history to record her 1,000th point. Schatzlein has turned into one of the best all around players in the NE-10 over the past four seasons as she also ranks fourth in school history in rebounds with 714 for her career. If Schatzlein can rack up 286 more rebounds this season she will be only the second Warrior ever to rack up 1,000 career rebounds and 1,000 career points.
SECOR RECORDS FIRST CAREER DOUBLE-DOUBLE:
The Warriors have received some great play from their newcomers this season and on Saturday this was no different as Shelby Secor recored her first career double-double in the defeat. Secor finished with 10 points and 11 rebounds in 23 minutes of action. Secor grabbed a team-high six offensive rebounds and went 4-5 from the charity stripe in the game. Freshman Ashley Weissmann put in her best game of the season on Saturday as she finished with a team-high 13 points off the bench.
TURNOVERS DOOM WARRIORS AGAINST RIVERHAWKS:
One of the keys to the Warriors early season success was not turning the ball over as much as last season but on Saturday the Warriors committed a season-high 24 turnovers. The Riverhawks turned the Warriors turnovers into 22 points on the afternoon. Three seperate players committed at leas five turnovers in the game and eight Warriors turned the ball over at least once. The Warriors did however force 20 turnovers by the Riverhawks, including 11 turnovers from leading scorer Bianca Simmons, that turned into 21 Warrior points.
FOUR WARRIORS SCORE IN DOUBLE FIGURES IN LOSING EFFORT:
Merrimack has proven to be one of the most spread out scoring teams in the conference as they have three players averaging at least 9.8 points per contest and this was no different on Saturday. In the loss to UMass Lowell, Merrimack had four players score in double digits including freshman Ashley Weissmann who racked up a team and career-high 13 points and four rebounds. Kelly Schatzlein continued to improve as she recorded her second straight double-double as she scored 10 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. Junior Shelby Secor also finished with her first career double-double as she scored 10 points and hauled in 11 boards. Captain Katie Ganser had her best game since the season opener as she finished with seven points and a season-high eight rebounds in the defeat while Jaclyn Lyons continued her steady play finishing with nine points, three assists and two rebounds.