Colonials season ends in South Bend
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The Robert Morris Colonials saw their season come to an end falling 79-49 to the number one seeded Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Robert Morris and Notre Dame took to the Purcell Pavillion at the Joyce Center on the Irish’s home court.
Notre Dame jumped out to a 10-0 lead early, but RMU didn’t let that lead increase anymore before getting its first points of the contest. RMU got their first points of the game while battling back to tie the score at 10.
However, the Irish answered back with a 12-0 run, getting their grip on the game.
It seemed as though when the Colonials had a look inside, Notre Dame prevented any easy shot.
The Irish’s Brianna Turner had to do a lot with the Colonials struggles trying to move the ball in the paint.
“Turner takes away so much away at the rim. She had five blocks but she changed a lot of them too. We got some great drives, we got some great punches in the gap, getting the ball deep into their paint and that is one of the big things that we are always trying to do, is get it into the other teams paint. Keep them out of our paint. That is kind of our philosophy,” head coach Charlie Buscaglia said.
“She (Turner) is really special around the basket. She’s long, athletic, she has great coordination and that really hurt us,” Buscaglia said.
Turner finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds but wasn’t the only Notre Dame player to make an impact for the Irish.
Another player the Colonials struggled with was the sophomore guard, Arike Ogunbowale. The sophomore finished the game with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
The Colonials struggled to hit shots they were used to making all season long, but one thing was still noticeable about RMU. Their heart.
While preparing for this first round match-up, Buscaglia knew his team’s trait of all-out effort wasn’t going to be an issue.
“One thing I was darn sure of, was this team would go out there and fight all the way to the end. And in my opinion, they didn’t fall any short of that at all,” Buscaglia said.
While trying to fight back tears, Stamolamprou, who led the Colonials with 19 points brought up the team’s heart, when explaining how the team battled back after being down 10 points to start the game.
“We said guys, let stay aggressive. Let’s play our game now so we had the heart to come back,” Stamolamprou said. “And then they got a lead and we kept coming back. That’s what we’re all about. We’re all about fighting. This team has a huge heart. That’s all I can say and I’m so proud of everybody on this team,” Stamolamprou said.
Even for senior Janee Brown, who was unable to play due to an ankle injury suffered at the end of the regular season, had heart while sitting on the Colonials bench.
“I just told them to keep fighting to keep playing hard. Coach B always tell us that we’re going to be the hardest working team, we’re going to have a full heart,” Brown said.
Robert Morris may have lost but they didn’t hand the game to Notre Dame. The Colonials fought and fought, even though the scoreboard kept increasing for the Irish.