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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Women’s basketball gains experience in Big 5

Freshman Katie Mayock takes a shot against Temple. PHOTOS: LUKE MALANGA ’20/THE HAWK

While the St. Joe’s women’s basketball team fell to two cross-town teams, Temple University and Drexel University, to open their season, the young team garnered valuable game experience, according to senior guard Alyssa Monaghan. The Hawks fought back from early deficits against the two city rivals.

St. Joe’s fell to Temple in Hagan Arena on Nov. 9 in a back and forth contest to open their season by a score of 58-52, coming back from a 9-0 deficit in the first quarter to tie the game at halftime before losing their lead in the fourth quarter.

They played again two days later on Nov. 11 against Drexel in a game which saw the Hawks fall behind 16-0 before pulling within seven points at the end of the third quarter before losing 51-34.

Senior Alyssa Monaghan inbounds the ball against Temple University.

Monaghan was the lone senior in the starting lineup for both games. She played all 40 minutes against Temple and 35 minutes against Drexel. She will look to facilitate the offense and lead a young core of scorers throughout the season.

“I do try to encourage them throughout the game,” Monaghan said. “And also making sure we know what to do in certain situations on offense, and getting them the ball when they’re open because they can score. Moving forward, they’ll only continue to grow and I definitely have trust in all of them.”

Redshirt freshman guard Katie Jekot led the way against Temple with 16 points while fellow freshman forward Katie Mayock added eight points and five rebounds. Those two performances stuck out to Head Coach Cindy Griffin following the game, calling them “the two Katies.”

Griffin recognized the youth on the team and the difficulty opening up their careers in such an intense environment. The Hawks play their first three games against intra city schools, at  Temple University, Drexel University and University of Pennsylvania.

“The only way to get experience is through experiencing it,” Griffin said. “We’re kind of throwing them into the fire right away, especially when you play local teams.”

Between the four starters that accompanied Monaghan in the team’s first two games, there was a total of 10 collegiate games played between them entering the season, all from sophomore guard Mary Sheehan. The young team was able to experience a true college basketball environment in their first game, as students began filling the student section throughout the second half, making for a loud Hagan Arena experience.

“It was a great atmosphere to play in front of,” Monaghan said. “People were coming in for the men’s game after and so it got pretty crowded and loud. It was a lot of fun.”

Griffin said it’s great for these women because they don’t always get that big of a crowd.

“I think anytime that they can play in front of their peers and play in front of a crowd, it’s awesome and the support here at St. Joe’s has been terrific,” Griffin said.

The Hawks will look to bounce back with another Big 5 matchup, this one on Nov. 15 at the storied Palestra against the University of Pennsylvania.

“One thing I was very impressed with our team was that we battled and we battled until the end and we had a lot of fight in us,” Griffin said. “Our kids really stepped up and they played like they had been there before.”

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