Women's basketball looks to improve in 2nd half of conference play

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(Photo by Hailey Mayes)
Weber State University freshman Deeshyra Thomas shoots the ball in a game earlier this season. The Wildcats are set to take on the University of Northern Colorado on Saturday.

The Weber State University women’s basketball team seems to have caught its stride offensively as of late. The Wildcats put up two of their best performances of the season last week in losses to Northern Arizona University and California State University, Sacramento.

This week, the Wildcats will hit the road to take on the University of Northern Colorado, a team that had their number the first time the two teams squared off, when UNC won 68-49. That being said, the recent performance of the Wildcats gives the conference an impression that they may be a much different team this time around.

Sophomore Desiree Ramos has continued to lead the team in scoring, as she has done all season, averaging 14 points per game. Other key players have found confidence and made strides to help the team play a complete game.

Coach Bethann Ord has been preaching that the team needs to find a way to play a complete 40 minutes to win. That change has been relevant in the past few games, as role-players have put up solid numbers and efforts. Both senior Amanda Hughes and sophomore Kalie Matthews achieved double-doubles in their last home stand.

The team combined to have six players in double figures in points in its last game. If that continues, Ord said, WSU is going to be a tough team to stop, and she is confident that Ramos can continue to distribute the ball and create shots for her teammates.

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(Photo by Tony Post)
Weber State University senior Amanda Hughes shoots in a game earlier this season. Hughes is one of several Wildcats who have played well in recent games.

“(Ramos) is my point guard,” Ord said. “The assists are what I like to see from her. Assists are the only stat that she looks and cares about. . . . We watch film to help with development, and that is really what she cares about. She is always asking me about what she needs to do to put the team in a position to win.”

Ramos will lead the Wildcats as they look to take down the Bears and erase the disappointing memories of a game in which they shot below 20 percent for a majority while watching the game slip away.

“I wanted to make my shots more consistently,” Ramos said. “I feel like I can step up more as a leader and put my teammates in better positions on the court. I still have goals. I feel like I haven’t reached where I want to be yet.”

The last time these two teams met, the Wildcats were able to contain Stephanie Lee to only three points. WSU kept her in foul trouble the whole game. Lee comes in second in the Big Sky in scoring with 19.6 points per game.

The Bears are not all about scoring, though. They have one of the best defensive teams in the conference. They hold their opponents to a stifling 65.6 points per game, the third-fewest points allowed in the Big Sky. They are a tough team to play at home.

The Bears are coming off a disappointing one-point loss on Saturday to Eastern Washington University, which they had a chance to win in the final seconds. The team will be looking to rebound from that loss and continue its winning ways against the Wildcats.

Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. in Greeley, Colo. The game can be seen on Big Sky TV or its mobile app.