Simmonds out early
Fifth-year senior Jessica Simmonds was aggressive on both ends of the court, but picked up two fouls in the first 10 minutes of the game, forcing head coach Joe McKeown to bench her for the rest of the first half. Without Simmonds, who along with sophomore Kim Beck was the focus of the Virginia defense, GW was left without a big source of scoring and rebounding.
“It hurt not having her on the floor,” McKeown said. “If we go into halftime and she had eight or 10 points and we’re down two, you’re looking at a different kind of game.”
Not doing the little things
Both McKeown and Beck were most frustrated with the team’s effort, which McKeown called “embarrassing.” The Colonials shot four-for-12 from the foul line and gave up 16 offensive rebounds. GW was ineffective stopping the ball on defense, oftentimes leaving the ball handler open for an easy jump shot.
Steele solid in return
After redshirting last year due to a leg injury, sophomore Lisa Steele played well in her first game back, shooting two-for-three from the field, including her first three-pointer and an acrobatic three-point play.
“Lisa has just been riddled with injuries,” McKeown said. “Every time it seems like she’s over the hump, something else will come up that will just pull her right back down. It will be a big step if we can get her healthy, but she’s had a hard time.”
Nerves a factor
McKeown said nerves may have been a factor in the atypical performance of some players, such as junior Kenan Cole and sophomore Sarah-Jo Lawrence. Cole shot two-for-10 but had been “lighting people up in practice,” McKeown said. Lawrence lives nearby UVA and may have been too “juiced up,” McKeown said.