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The Aconfora Report: Hoop at WestConn

By Nicholas Aconfora/Sports Information Staff



At left: Shannon McCourt

After three straight conference wins, the Warriors (5-10, 3-2 LEC) look to stay hot as they take on their in-state rival, Western Connecticut. Western comes into the game 10-5,  3-2 in the conference. The Colonoials have won three straight games overall and come in hot to play the Warriors in Danbury. Guard Caroline Brasa has led the Colonials in points per game with 13.3 while other guards Jackie Zilnicki and Carly Murphy add around 10 points per game. Knowing this, it could be the game for Shannon McCourt to dominate in the paint with her short fade-away and mid-range jumper. Eastern must rely on strong defense from its guards as Brasa, Zilnicki and Murphy will look to score often. I see this game turning out to be extremely close throughout and the team who plays better defensively will come out with a win.

 Key for WestConn - Attack the basket all game long. Although they don't have much size, either does Eastern. The guards for the Colonials must get players like McCourt and Jill Ritrosky in foul trouble and get to the line as much as they can.

Key for Eastern - Like I said above, they need to have great defense coming from the guard position. If McCourt can find a way to get hot early on, they Warriors will be in good shape.


salzillo_tie_72_2785.jpgAt left: Brian Salzillo

Besides a 1-3 record in two tournaments over this winter intersession, the Warriors have been consistent all season long. Take away those three four games, they're 9-2. They come into the game at 10-5, 4-1 in the conference only losing to Southern Maine in their LEC opener. Western comes into this game 4-10, which is a very disappointing season so far after losing its star Daquan Brooks. The most impressive part of the Colonials season thus far is their freshman Phil Starks. Starks is leading the team in points per game and shoots just about 40 percent from beyond the arc. Although Starks'  three point percentage is fairly good, it seems like there's no one better than Brian Salzillo. Prior to Saturday's four three's, Salzillo was already second in the nation (4.02) behind Jack Taylor of Grinnell College in three pointers made a game. Taylor was recently injured and could be out a while, which will give Salzillo a chance to take over the top spot. For this game, it would surprise me if Eastern didn't come away with an easy win on the road. The team is bigger, stronger, and more talented than this Western team which lost Brooks after last year.

 Key for WestConn - Get as many players involved offensively as you can. Starks can't be the only one scoring in this one, the Colonials need to step up and move the ball around on offense.

Key for Eastern - Work the ball inside to Chris Robitaille, who shouldn't have any trouble down in the paint and will look to have another monster game. 


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