The Robert Morris University women’s basketball team failed to help its Northeast Conference playoff chances Monday night, falling to Monmouth, 60-48, at the Charles L. Sewall Center.
The physicality of the Hawks was too much for the hurting squad to handle despite another solid performance from junior forward Artemis Spanou, who posted 25 points and 18 rebounds.
Spanou, currently leading the NEC in points and rebounds per game, was constantly beaten up by the powerful frontcourt of the visiting Hawks, who took every opportunity to knock or bump her out of position.
The Colonials star acknowledged the team’s fatigue becoming an increasing factor down the last stretch of the season.
“We play seven players now,” said Spanou. “Monmouth is a very physical team. Playing a strong team like that, you definitely need a lot of players, but we did whatever we could to play hard and at a tough level tonight.”
With the rough play in the post evident throughout the game, a lack of calls from the officials wound up hurting the Colonials in the end.
“They didn’t give us a lot of calls down low,” said Spanou, a junior forward. “That’s what happens sometimes and I have to stay calm in those situations to continue to play strong for the team.”
Head coach Sal Buscaglia agreed with his leading scorer after the loss, stressing their opponent’s style of play not matching up well with the Colonials current situation.
“We were really tired from Saturday’s overtime game,” said Buscaglia. “They [Monmouth] were very physical and probably the worst type of team for us to play.”
The unfortunate circumstances this year continue to sadden the 10-year head coach.
“We’ve been dealt some bad cards this year, and it’s really disheartening for these kids because they gave it everything they had. No complaints on my part.” he said.
The two games remaining on RMU’s schedule are now considered “must win’s” for any shot at an NEC playoff berth. If the squad can manage to come out on top of the two matchups, they will also need some help from the rest of the league to continue their season through March.
“We have to win these next two, and probably have some help too,” Buscaglia added. “It’s possible, but we’re focusing on the next game, and we’ll see how it turns out.”