The Fighting Scots women’s basketball team is ready to flip the script for the 2019-20 season, after having a tough 2018-19 season with only six wins and 19 losses. Finishing 2-14 in the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) that same year, the Scots wanted to start their new year off on a positive note, and did so by winning their first regular season game against the Bethany College Lions with a score of 75- 54 during the Nan Nichols Classic on Saturday, Nov. 19.
“It’s always great to start the season off with a win,” captain Aubri McKoy ’20 said. Although McKoy is happy with a season- opening win, she wants herself and her team to stay hungry for more wins. “In my time here, we’ve won the first three to four games and then I think we are content. We can’t afford to do that,” McKoy added. “Since I’ve played basketball, my dad and I established a 24-hour rule. Whether I won or lost, played well or poorly, I only have 24 hours to either celebrate or sulk. After that we’re onto the next mission. That is something I’ve tried to bring to my team as well — one win is great, but we have plenty more to earn.”
Jenna Stanton ’22, a team captain as a sophomore for the Fighting Scots, thinks the game against Bethany was a goof indicator for how the team will do this season.”I thought the win against Bethany was huge.” Stanton said. “I was so excited by the potential shown by our team. I think we have a great season ahead of us and I’m excited to get started.”
The Fighting Scots came out of the gates strong against Bethany until the clock struck zero, with a double-double by Maria Janasko ’21 with ten rebounds and a solid 12 points. Adding to the numbers was A’Janay Nicholson ’22 with 14 points, a career-high for the sophomore. Along with her baskets, she attributed four steals and grabbed eight rebounds.
In the second game of the Nan Nichols Classic for the Scots, the Fighting Scots suffered a loss of 73-90 against the Mount Union Purple Raiders on Sunday, Nov. 17.
Although the loss was a tough blow, the Scots kept their spirits high and saw the game as a way to improve. “I think we put up a good fight against Mount Union,” McKoy said. “It’s always great to play highly competitive teams early on in the season because your wounds are exposed at a time in which you have ample healing time before conference play. We saw what we do well, and we saw where we can improve. Now it’s a matter of building on those strengths and nurturing those weaknesses.”
The Scots lost one of their big shooters early in the game against Mount Union, as Stanton was knocked by a Purple Raider player and broke her nose within the first play. “Although I did not get to play against Mount Union after breaking my nose, I loved getting to cheer my team on, and I was proud of the no-quit attitude we showed,” Stanton said. The loss of Stanton gave Mount Union an edge, as they scored 21 points within the first quarter while the Scots only put up nine.
Throughout the game, Cat Fiorito ’20 was determined to fight back, as she scored a career- high 22 points for the Scots. Her stellar performance snagged her a spot on the all-tournament team.
After their first two games of the season, the team hopes to improve on their consistency and drive. “We need to be great all four quarters, not just two or three! If we can put four solid quarters together, we’ll be tough,” Stanton stated.