Poor shooting prevented Cornell women’s basketball from achieving victories against Penn and Princeton at home in a pair of weekend contests.
The game against Penn saw the Red struggle immensely in the third quarter, resulting in a 59-46 loss. Then, 22 turnovers against reigning Ivy League champion Princeton resulted in a harsh 19-point deficit at the final whistle of a 75-46 loss.
“Although we got a few good looks against Penn, our conversion was well below the expected standard, causing the game to slip out of our hands easily,” said head coach Dayna Smith. “It is imperative that our bench starts producing more consistently by making more shots and avoiding callous turnovers.”
One bright spot for Cornell is that the Red managed 100 percent accuracy from the free throw line in the second half against Penn.
“Our free throw shooting was definitely a positive take away from the game, as was our success while rebounding, considering the immense size advantage that Penn had,” Smith said.
Cornell managed to outrebound Penn, 42-41. Despite the temporary victory, the Red’s woes from the three-point line continued — it managed to make just two of its 13 tries from the perimeter.
“15.4 percent from the three-point line is definitely not good enough,” Smith said. “We need to get in the gym and step up our game in order to improve these numbers.”
After the loss on Friday against Penn, the Red started extremely slowly against Princeton, going down 17-7 in the first quarter.
“Princeton started the game at a very high tempo, making it difficult for our players to keep up,” Smith said. “We allowed them to play to their strengths and we struggled to make open shots and layups.”
Junior Laura Bagwell-Katalinich was the standout player for the Red, scoring 20 points against Penn and 12 against Princeton. She was the highest scorer in both games for Cornell.
“Laura played her heart out against extremely talented opposition,” Smith said. “She showed immense desire and scoring acumen, however, we do need more players to contribute to the offense.”
The Red will now turn its attention to Dartmouth and Harvard, as it hosts the Green and the Crimson next weekend at Newman Arena.
“We are [most] focused on regrouping as a squad and reflecting on our mistakes from this weekend,” Smith said.