By: Brendan Zdunek – Staff Writer
The Dayton women’s basketball team began Atlantic 10 play Sunday afternoon in a matchup with the La Salle Explorers. The Flyers lost the game 54-51 and they fall to 3-5 overall on the season.
“Any loss stings, but [conference play] is what we really work for,” said head coach Shauna Green. “To start this way and at home, this hurts and if it doesn’t hurt, then there’s a problem.”
The first quarter featured the offenses trading buckets, ending with the Flyers ahead 13-11.
However, in the second quarter, the Dayton’s field goal percentage dipped below 40 percent and La Salle took the lead by halftime, 30-24. Moreover, UD’s offensive production was limited to the performance of Jenna Burdette and Saicha Grant-Allen, who combined for 22 of those 24 points.
In the third, the Flyers got more contribution from the rest of the team, and tied the game at 39 entering the fourth. However, the bad shooting reappeared in the fourth quarter, and UD could not pull away offensively. After the game was tied at 51, the Explorers made 3 free throws to go up, 54-51.
Kelley Austria had a chance to tie it up at the buzzer, but her three-point attempt came up short, and La Salle emerged victorious.
“Those second and fourth quarters were not going the way we wanted so we got to continue to improve on the little things,” said Green. “That’s all we stress: focus on the little things and improve upon them.”
Jenna Burdette had her own take on the loss. “We’re just too inconsistent right now. We were on the road for a while and we didn’t get in the gym as much as we should have. We were just not really focused,” she said.
While this game was officially the first conference game of the year for both teams, the Flyers have a few non-conference opponents to face before they begin the bulk of conference play. Up next are the Toledo Rockets on Friday, December 9 at UD Arena.
“Toledo is a great team,” said Green. “I’m worried about us, though, and improving on these things that keep on re-occurring. We got to figure it out.”
Photo by Erik Schelkun/Dayton Athletics