"To Dozier's Chagrin, Women's Basketball Tallies Fifth Straight Loss"
UB women's basketball Head Coach Cheryl Dozier is not happy. But what coach would be after her team's fifth-straight loss to a team they should easily have beaten?
The Bulls were held to an embarrassing 11 points in the first half of their 55-35 loss against the Marshall Thundering Herd Wednesday night at Alumni Arena. The team has taken a nosedive reminiscent of last season, dropping five straight games against MAC opponents to take their record to 4-9 in the conference (9-15 overall). Marshall's record improves to 7-16 (3-9 MAC).
"Well, I'm pissed. . I am not happy with my squad at all right now. I mean, I've got no leaders out there. We're a very, very undisciplined basketball team and I don't know if we can get disciplined in the next two weeks or if we're going to have to get into the off season and get ourselves some disciplined players," Dozier said during the post-game press conference.
The Bulls played an abysmal first half, shooting 17.6 percent (3 of 17) and progressing through the first 10 minutes of the game without a single field goal.
Marshall's half was not remarkably better, shooting 35.7 percent (10-28), but still doubled the Bulls scoring to head into halftime with a 22-11 lead.
"I give a lot of credit to Marshall," said Dozier. "They wanted the basketball game more than we did, they came in and played extremely physical with our kids, and it's something we haven't dealt well with all year. They knocked shots down when they needed to."
Marshall also played stifling man defense, preventing the Bulls from getting any shots inside and forcing them to shoot from the perimeter.
"They played extremely physical against us. We just backed down. We were on our heels the entire night, from the tip, and they just took it at us, and that's the most disappointing thing for me.
"I'm probably more furious because if the saying is that this team is a reflection of me, they aren't right now. They're not a reflection of me, because I don't back down. I have more emotion in my pinkie than most of those kids, and that's the most frustrating thing for me right now," Dozier said.
The Bulls were forced out of their comfort zone, taking low-percentage shots, many of which were off balance and out of their range. They moved the ball around well, but appeared tentative and did not capitalize on open shots, ending up shooting 26.2 percent for the game compared to Marshall's 43.1 percent.
"Our thing all week in practice was to go inside with the basketball and once it came back outside they needed to look to shoot it. Well, when we went inside first and I have no idea why they were hesitant on the perimeter."
hurt the team. The Bulls committed 20, compared to Marshall's 13. Each time the Bulls tried to mount a run, they lost the ball off the dribble. It was the team's mental errors in the fundamentals that had coach Dozier most perturbed.
"Twenty turnovers? Twenty turnovers at home, that is something that has killed us all year. That's why I go back to we're not a disciplined basketball team. We're not a young team anymore, we're 24 games into this season and this stuff just should not be happening."
The Bulls came out of half time and immediately pulled to within 8 on a lay-up by captain Virginia Jennings, who led the Bulls in scoring with 9, followed by a free throw for the three-point play. Marshall, however, was able to move up by 11 once more with seven minutes left on a Catie Knable lay-up.
UB battled back and got to within six with 5:54 remaining on the clock, on a Kim Kilpela lay-up, but that was as close as they'd come. Marshall's run late in the game to go up by 20 spoiled any hope of a UB victory.
"I think we took too quick of shots down at the half, we had six and a half minutes to go and we were trying to get quick hits when we were only down six points," said Jennings.
As for the rest of the season, the team's own forecast is gloomy.
"Right now we've been trying to get a fire going because we're so stagnant in everything that we do. We're just sitting down letting them taking it to us," Jennings said.
Dozier vehemently agreed.
"Well, I think there needs to be a gut check with some of those kids in that locker room. At times they just feel sorry for themselves. Instead of coming out with boxing gloves on they just have a tendency to roll over right now, and that's the kind of character that I have to get into that locker room and do some gut checks with some of those kids.
"And I don't know what we're gonna do trying to go into this tournament. I have no idea. Obviously, we're going on the road now and it ain't gonna be a cake walk for us," Dozier said.
The Bulls will try to rebound on the road this Saturday against Ohio University, 1 p.m. at Convocation Center.