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UMass women’s basketball suffers disappointing loss to St. Bonaventure at Mullins Center Thursday -

January 19, 2017

REPORT: Tom Masella out as defensive coordinator for UMass football -

January 19, 2017

Zach Lewis, bench carry UMass men’s basketball in win over St. Joe’s -

January 19, 2017

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass football hosts Maine at Fenway Park in 2017 -

January 12, 2017

UMass men’s basketball snaps losing streak and upsets Dayton Wednesday night at Mullins Center -

January 11, 2017

UMass women’s track and field takes second at Dartmouth Relays -

January 10, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 5 Boston University at Frozen Fenway -

January 8, 2017

UMass professor to make third appearance on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 8, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers brutal loss on road against Saint Joseph’s -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops thirds straight, falls to VCU 81-64 -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops tightly-contested conference matchup against George Mason Wednesday night -

January 4, 2017

Late-game defense preserves UMass women’s basketball’s win against rival Rhode Island -

January 4, 2017

AIC shuts out UMass hockey 3-0 at Mullins Center -

January 4, 2017

UMass professor to appear as contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’ Thursday night -

January 4, 2017

Penalties plague UMass hockey in Mariucci Classic championship game -

January 2, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls in A-10 opener to St. Bonaventure and its veteran backcourt -

December 30, 2016

Winless Minutewomen take on Brown at home on Wednesday

Maria Uminski, Collegian Staff

After going through a grueling five-game road trip, the Massachusetts women’s basketball team is looking to pick up its first win on the year at home against Brown on Wednesday night.

The Minutewomen (0-6) have traveled up and down the East Coast over the past few weeks, trying to find their rhythm and how to best work with their strengths and weaknesses.

So far, they have found that slow starts can heavily deter second half bursts.

In five of six starts on the season, UMass has trailed at the end of the first half, with four of those five first half deficits being in double digits. A large factor to the lack of scoring in the first half, according to UMass coach Sharon Dawley, is the team’s inconsistent ability to drain routine shots.

“We need to do a better job of making our easy shots,” Dawley said. “We are getting great opportunities; we just need to finish them.”

Overall in the first half, the Maroon and White have been outscored 203-146, compared to being outscored 231-199 in the second half.

The Minutewomen have been much better in second-half play, as they have seen their offense spark to life to make strong comebacks possible.

Barring its games against Providence and Maryland, UMass has been making strong runs to keep themselves in games, shooting as well as 57.1 percent from the field, as it did in its game against the Pirtates.

A large part of their scoring abilities in the second half and in games overall can be attributed to the ability to sink shots from behind the arc.

“The 3-ball is critical right now to our offense,” Dawley said. “Without a big inside presence right now, we need to be strong at the arc and we are.”

Based on Dawley’s comments, the Minutewomen are going to need to both keep their 3-point shooters strong and develop their inside presence if they want to win against Brown.

The Bears (2-4) have been a strong team thus far in the season. Their first three losses on the season have been by 10 points or fewer, and their defense has limited opposing offenses from making large runs.

However, in their last game against the University of Maryland-Batimore County in the Iona Thanksgiving Tournament, the Bears could not get their gears in motion well enough to go down the stretch against the Retrievers, as they saw their losing streak grow to two games.

Wednesday night’s game at the Mullins Center will also mark the Bears’ sixth road game on the season thus far, a feeling that the Minutewomen can relate to.

With that being said, UMass will be looking to make good headway against Brown, especially in the form of its key players.

Both Megan Zullo and Cerie Mosgrove have started in all six games for UMass this season and have scored an average of 11.3 points per game, while combining for 426 minutes of playing time. Zullo is the better of the two in the 3-point game with a .406 completion percentage, while Mosgrove is averaging 5.3 rebounds a game. The two seniors have been critical in the team’s offensive development.

Shakia Robinson has certainly been making her mark for UMass this season, as she has also started all six games while racking up a 32.3 minutes per game on average. Robinson has been deadly in the inside game with a .519 field-goal percentage, an 11.2 points per game average and has shown great maturity and leadership in just her second season.

David Martin can be reached at dmmartin@student.umass.edu.

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