written by: Neil Frawley
With March close on the horizon, the dog days of basketball are officially upon us.
Teams are quickly trying to shore up their records heading toward conference tournaments, and most importantly — the NCAA tournament, which is looming just close enough in the distance to add significance to every game.
For VSU, whom have dropped their last seven out of nine games, they will need to capitalize on the treacherous stretch of five games over a the span of nine days if they want to boost their chances to go to the big dance.
The grueling stretch begins tonight against North Alabama University (12-8, 7-7 in GSC), followed by Union University on Saturday (15-5, 10-4 in GSC), and then a brief road trip to Pensacola, Fla. to play West Florida University (12-6, 7-5 in GSC) for a make-up game that was cancelled for inclement weather. The game was originally set to be played on Jan. 28.
After coming back from Pensacola, the Lady Blazers will need to refocus quickly, as arch rival West Georgia University (6-14, 4-10 in GSC) will be paying a visit on Thursday, followed by another home game against Shorter University (5-15, 3-11 in GSC) next Saturday.
Perhaps the silver lining for the next nine days is that four of the next five games will be played at home, giving the players added comfort to try and pick up a few key victories as before conference play ends.
VSU split its two latest road games, beating West Alabama University 73-55 last Thursday — followed by a 75-67 loss to Alabama-Huntsville on Saturday.
April Thomas lead VSU in the win against WAU with 20 points, Kourtnee Williams had 15, and Amy Duke had 10.
Against AHU, four players had double figures in points, with Amy Duke leading the way with 17. Jordan Waugh had 14, Thomas had 13, and K. Williams had 10. Despite the balanced scoring, the team shot just 37.7% (23-61) combined from the field.
“[At Alabama] Huntsville we just couldn’t buy a basket. [We] just couldn’t really make baskets down the stretch. We had some tough situations— tough breaks.”