With four sophomores and a freshman in the starting rotation, University of Indianapolis Women’s Basketball Head Coach Constantin Popa knew that the beginning of the season would be difficult. After two losses at home to the University of Wisconsin-Parkside and Lewis University, the Greyhounds currently hold a record of 1-9, 0-2 in the Great Lakes Valley Conference.
“We had so many games right off the bat, and that kind of worked against us. Some of them were just coming off injuries, so that didn’t help at all,” Popa said. “We finally have everyone healthy and everyone on the same page, so we’re definitely taking advantage of this break to clean up and talk about some issues. We’re picking up the intensity with everyone healthy and back on the court.”
With a 12-day break from games in the schedule before facing Tiffin University, junior forward Nicole Anderson said the team is continuing to put the pieces together during practice.
“It’s putting it all together for the entire game. Our practice schedule is pretty much the same these two weeks, so we’ll just be working on improving from where we left off for this upcoming game,” she said.
The Greyhounds fell to the No. 7 Lewis University Flyers on Dec. 5 in Nicoson Hall, 67-51. The Flyers came out fast, scoring quickly and immediately creating a large gap. They did so again in the second half, but UIndy battled back and kept the Lewis lead in the single digits for several minutes. The Greyhounds could not contain the Flyer’s offense in the third quarter, bringing the score to 55-43. UIndy’s offense could not compete in the final quarter, completing only two of 14 shots on the floor and bringing the final score to 67-51 in Lewis’ favor.
Senior guard Princess German played the entire matchup and led the team with 24 points. Sophomore guard Sarah Costello put up 13 points as well as seven boards for the second consecutive game. Sophomore forward Ashley Montanez led the Greyhounds in rebounds, with a total of eight.
Prior to the Lewis game, the Greyhounds opened up conference play against the University of Wisconsin-Parkside Rangers on Dec. 3.
The Rangers quickly took charge and the led early in the game, creating a large challenge for the Greyhounds. However, the UIndy defense held the Rangers, and the Hounds went on a 10-2 run, bringing the score to 21-16 UIndy in the second quarter.
The score bounced back-and-fourth between the teams until German scored nine out of the ten-point run for the Hounds with less than two minutes left in the third quarter, tying the game at 44 all. Both teams went on a run offensively and defensively in the fourth quarter, but the Rangers were able to pull away.
Anderson led the Greyhounds with a season-high of 22 points, and German followed with 17 points. Costello led the team in rebounds with a total of seven for the night.
A problem the young Greyhounds are facing is allowing their opponents to score multiple points off turnovers, Popa said. While facing Parkside, the Rangers scored 25 points off of Greyhound turnovers.
“We’ve got to do a better job of taking care of the ball, and that comes with experience and maturity. We’ve got a young team; we’ve got four sophomores and a freshman on that floor, and you can tell,” Popa said. “We’re working on it, and we’re getting better. We’re working on these problems every day in practice, but they’re getting better.”
Popa said that one way the team can make these adjustments is through the example of the upperclassmen on the team. He said he has high expectations for the leaders, and they are the ones who can make the difference.
“It’s not easy to lead, and it’s especially not easy to lead when you start a season with little success. They are becoming more vocal and getting better. I expect a lot from them, and they should expect the same from themselves.”
The Greyhounds will face the Tiffin at home in Nicoson Hall tomorrow, Dec. 17. Tipoff is scheduled for 5:15 p.m.