Women’s College Hoops: Fordham Undefeated at Home [Photos] • Latino Sports

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Women’s College Hoops: Fordham Undefeated at Home [Photos]

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Bronx, NY – Although Sunday, February 13, was the coldest day of 2016 in New York City, the atmosphere within the Rose Hill Gym on the Bronx campus of Fordham University was warm.

The Fordham Rams (12-13, 7-5 A-10) defeated the La Salle Explorers (4-21, 1-11 A-10), 54-44. The win was the sixth straight home victory for the Rams. They are now 6-0 in their home gym in the Bronx. The loss was the 11th of the last 12 games of the Explorers.

Fordham’s excellent defensive efforts were instrumental in obtaining the win. It was the eighth contest of the year in which the Rams have held their opponent to less than 50 points.

After scoring eight unanswered points in the second quarter, the Rams took their largest lead in the first half, 18-10 at 6:48. The visitors closed strongly on a 15-5 scoring run to lead by two, 27-25, at the first half concluded. Both teams shot from the floor in the 30’s percentile, the Explorers scored four more, 11-7, off turnovers.

The Rams regrouped during the half and scored 11 straight points during the third quarter to take a 41-33 lead with 1:43 on the clock. They retained an advantage throughout the remainder of the contest to win by 10, 54-44.

The Rams maintained control of the basketball with only five turnovers in the second half while forcing the visitors to turn it over ten times. Their defense also improved as they held La Salle to a meager 25.9% shooting from the floor.

The Explorers were held to single figures in scoring in the third and fourth quarters. Fordham’s coiach Stepanie Gaitley, who registered her 560th college coaching victory called the game “ a gut-check win.”

Senior Samantha Clark achieved her 11th double-double of the season with 17 points and 13 rebounds. Her career totals rose to 1,185 points, 10th in Fordham history 881 boards, third among the university’s women hoopsters. Her three blocked shots gave her a career total of 140.

Fordham’s high scorer with 19 was Danielle Burns. It was the fourth straight double digit scoring game for the current Atlantic-10 Player of the Week.

Before the contest began, the Rams and the New York Liberty of the WNBA teamed to offer a basketball clinic to many youngsters. It was the third clinic of the year given for young fans and future college/and or professional hoopsters.

A legend in college and the WNBA, Teresa Weatherspoon, the Director of Player Development of the Liberty came to the Bronx to speak with the Fordham team and to encourage the young people at the clinic. Coach Gaitley remarked that her “loved Weatherspoon.”

She also admitted that some of the young women on the team had to use Wikipedia to find out who Weatherspoon was. The basketball great earned a Gold Medal in the Olympics and played in the first four WNBA All-Star games. To her credit, Weatherspoon sat at courtside to watch the action throughout the entire game.

Veteran coach Gaitley of Fordham arranged the clinic in cooperation with the Liberty general manager, who she said “wanted to team up.” Both teams gained by its being scheduled as did all the youngsters who participated in it.

The game was dedicated to the late coach Kay Yow. The games throughout the nation entitled Play4Kay are intended to raise awareness of breast cancer and funds for research. Players on both teams were attired in pink as were many in the crowd of 1,018.

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About Howard Goldin

Howard Goldin is a 72-year-old Bronx native whose passion for sports is evidenced by his 15 years of sports writing with Latino Sports. A former English instructor at Monroe College, his love for sports started with baseball and have expanded since. If there's a sport or a community event, Howard will be in attendance covering it.

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