Hawks fall in opening round of CCC tournament

Britney Dixon and Brett Johnson, Managing Editor and Sports Editor

The 4-seed Hawks lost to the 5-seed Curry College Colonels in the Commonwealth Coast Conference Quarterfinals by a score of 64-61.

The last time the Hawks matched up against the Colonels was on Feb. 13 when RWU came out victorious, 57-54.

“We expected this to be a really good game,” RWU Head Coach Kelly Thompson said. “They’re very aggressive, very physical… It was exactly what we expected.”

And that’s what the Hawks saw. In an aggressive first half, Curry put up nine personal fouls, bringing RWU to the line five times. The Hawks shot .500 from the line.

RWU struggled in the paint as well, going 10-27 for field goals.

At the end of the half, the Hawks could not beat the Colonels defense and ended it with a buzzer beater to carry them behind by only three with the score 30-27.

“We didn’t do a great job getting defensive boards early in the game and I think that really hurt us. We gave them too many second chances. And defensively we just had some breakdowns where we fouled a little too much,” Coach Thompson said.

The game was fast-paced, but it was not reflected in the score.

Momentum constantly changed between the two teams in the third quarter, but the Colonels took a three-point lead into the final quarter.

The Colonels led for most of the fourth quarter, but the Hawks rallied and tied it up at 59 with just over a minute left to go. But Curry’s Emily Erwin’s 31st point put the Colonels back up with 51 seconds left.

Margarita Delaporta hit two free throws with just under 30 seconds, but a foul sent Irwin to the line. She made one of two. The Hawks got the ball back but with only six seconds left in regulation and down by one.

Unable to get the ball in bounds, the Hawks called a time out they didn’t have. Amanda Leale took the two technical foul shots for the Colonels but only made one. The Colonels regained possession and the Hawks fouled in hopes to get the ball back. Leale hit another free throw to extend their lead to three.

The Hawks rebounded with four seconds left but wasn’t able to put up a shot before the buzzer.

“It’s really disappointing to lose it because we played a really tough game,” Coach Thompson said.

Freshman forward Karli Opalka led the team with 23 points and 11 rebounds.

 

Although their season is over, Coach Thompson is optimistic about the future of her young team. They will be losing only one senior, so she’s encouraged by the postseason showing her young team had Tuesday night.

“As hard as it is to lose, there’s a lot of lessons to be learned not just from this game, but from the whole season,” Coach Thompson said.