Associate Sports Editor
The women’s team also started their season this past weekend, as they opened up with games against No. 22 Glenville State and Urbana.
The Marauders’ had a tough opening opponent in Glenville State, who led the nation in scoring last season with 102 points per game and went 30-3. They also made it to the second round of the NCAA tournament.
The Marauders stuck with the Pioneers through the first quarter, but a strong second quarter for Glenville State put them ahead big. The Pioneers went on a 9-0 run, and the Marauders were now down 12.
The Pioneers would expand their lead even more before halftime, scoring 26 points within the last five minutes of the first half. The Marauders just could not keep up with the high-powered Pioneers offense.
However, Millersville refused to fold and played solid defense throughout the second half, limiting Glenville State to only 53 second half points.
Freshman guard Morgan Debeary led the Marauders in scoring with 12 points. Redshirt sophomore guard Atiya McDonald added 10 points and was 50% shooting from the field.
Head coach Mary Fleig was pleased by her team’s performance against one of the top team in division II basketball.
“Glenville State is a very good division II team and they play an entirely different style of basketball. Having to overcome that, our kids did a really nice job. We didn’t block out very well and we missed some free throws. We gave up a lot of points there and those are things we can work on and control. They’re such a fast-paced team that we got caught up with it a few times. We definitely did some good things. Some of the new kids went in and really played. They didn’t play scared. It was a great learning situation.”
The Marauders had another opportunity against the Urbana Blue Knights the following day.
The Marauders fell behind early in the first quarter, but a big 14-0 run gave Millersville an eight-point lead within the closing moments of the first quarter. The Marauders maintained the lead through most of the second quarter until a turnover sparked an 8-0 run from the Blue Knights, tying the game at 29 a piece.
The Blue Knights maintained their lead throughout most of the second half, but a late surge from the Marauders cut the lead to two points. Millersville wasn’t able to maintain this momentum, and they ended up losing by 12.
Three Marauders finished with double-digit points in scoring. Junior guard Lauren Lister recorded 26 points, three steals and four rebounds. Junior guard Olivia Mottern tallied 17 points and five rebounds. Junior guard Ty Taylor added 13 points and five rebounds.
“We just weren’t defending today. They scored too many points in the paint. Our defense was trying to clog up the middle and they were able to shoot from the outside,” Fleig said on the lack of defense against Urbana.
It’s still early for the Marauders, who are still trying to find their identity early on. Coach Fleig believes her team will get where they need to be.
“Right now, I just think we’re still finding out where our strengths are and where our weaknesses are. We just have to keep getting better.”
The Marauders will travel to Chestnut Hill tonight to square off against the Griffins.