LADY HAWKS TIP-OFF THE NEW SEASON VERSUS SPARTANS AT HOME
Nov. 7, 2013
PRINCESS ANNE, Md. – Tomorrow (11/8), the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) women’s basketball team tips-off their 2013-14 campaign against the University of South Carolina-Upstate (USC-Upstate) at the William P. Hytche Athletic Center. Game begins 6:00 p.m.
UMES ended last season 8-20 overall (4-12 MEAC), including a first-round loss to Morgan State, 56-49, in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Tournament. In the offseason, the team lost four players, including seniors Karona Roach and Sha-Kiyla Finney to graduation.
Junior Shawnee Sweeney (Chester, VA) returns as the Lady Hawk’s top scorer from last season, averaging 7.9 points-per-game (ppg). Sweeney also led the team in three-pointers made (46) while averaging 26.5 minutes per game (mpg), which was second on the team behind Roach (28.6).
Shanyce Stewart (Mount Vernon, NY), one of two seniors on this season’s team, returns to UMES in her final season. Last season, Stewart led the team in rebounds-per-game (7.3), which was also eighth-best in the conference. Stewart recorded a career-high 17 boards versus North Carolina A&T (2/2/13).
Last season, Alexis Udoji (Randolph, MA) was among the top shot-blockers in the nation, averaging 2.6 blocks-per-contest. The MEAC All-Rookie honoree was the top shot-blocker in the conference and finished 19th in the nation. Currently, Udoji has a nine-game streak of at least one block in a game, dating back to last season (2/9/13). Last month, Udoji was named to the College Sports Madness 2013-14 MEAC Preseason Second Team All-Conference.
Sophomore Ashleigh Claybrooks (Manassas, VA) averaged 7.0ppg, which was fourth-best on the team, while posting 5.6 rebounds-per-game (rpg). Last season, the Manassas-native also earned MEAC All-Rookie honors along with Udoji. This week, the conference selected Claybrooks to the MEAC Preseason Second Team All-Conference.
Friday’s matchup is the first-ever meeting between these two institutions. For the Spartans, this is their season opener as they finished 12-18 overall (8-10 Atlantic Sun) last season. USC-Upstate returns five players, including three starters, Sophomores Brittany Clency and Brittany Starling and Junior Shelby Hicks. Starling is the top returner for the Spartans, averaging 10.3ppg and 6.3rpg a year ago.
For the Lady Hawks, 11 players return from last season while they added four new faces to the team. Last season, UMES was among the top defensive and rebounding teams in the conference. The team finished fourth in defensive field goal percentage (37%) while ranking second in rebounds (41.4), just behind Hampton (41.5). The Lady Hawks also finished third in blocks-per-game (4.0). Offensively, the team averaged 4.9 three-pointers-per-game, which was fourth-best in the MEAC conference last season.
After Friday night’s game, the Lady Hawks will begin a three-game road trip starting in our Nation’s Capital, Washington, DC, where they will face American University. Tip-off is 7:00 p.m.
For complete recaps, results and news of Hawk athletics, please visit www.umeshawks.com.