Women’s Basketball Drops Two of Three


Kendell Heremaia (above) had 17 points and seven rebounds in Fordham's win over Dayton last Saturday.

Jimmy Sullivan, Sports Editor

Most teams in the Atlantic 10 — at least in women’s basketball — have a legitimate chance to win the conference this year. While Dayton has been the best team this season, the Flyers have played a number of close games. In fact, seven of their 13 A-10 wins have been single-digit games. The clear-cut second fiddle in the conference has been VCU, which has 4-3 record in February. 

Then there’s the third-place team: Fordham.

The Rams have showcased this parity, for better or worse, over the past week. The team’s week started with a loss to Saint Louis on Wednesday in Missouri. That game started at 11 a.m. local time for kids day, the third such early start Fordham has endured this season. (Fordham is 1-2 in such games). The Rams held a 44-42 lead with under five minutes left, but eight points in a two-minute span by Saint Louis freshman Jadiah Stewart led the Billikens to a 59-49 victory.

Needing to respond, Fordham faced a Dayton team that had been unbeaten in A-10 play at the Rose Hill Gym on Saturday. The Rams would change that in a hurry.

Fordham knocked off Dayton for its first A-10 loss of the year and the Rams’ biggest win of the year to date. Fordham held Dayton to just 15 first-half points, which was eerily similar to the teams’ first matchup in late January, when Dayton held the Rams to just 10 first-half points. Fordham held that lead into the fourth quarter, and with the Rams up by six with six and a half minutes to play, freshman Anna DeWolfe hit a miracle two-point jumper from midair with the shot clock expiring. It was just Fordham’s day.

The 38 points Fordham allowed on Saturday were the fewest the Rams allowed in conference play. With the win, Fordham looked to continue their momentum against Duquesne on Tuesday. Entering Tuesday’s game, Duquesne was part of a cluster of eight teams who had between six and eight wins in A-10 play. 

Despite the excellent win on Saturday, Fordham’s momentum would soon come to a screeching halt.

The Rams fell to the Dukes 74-63 in Pittsburgh; the game was played at Robert Morris University as Duquesne’s regular home, the Palumbo Center, is under construction this year. Duquesne’s 74 points were tied for the most points the Rams have allowed all season, and things got progressively worse for Fordham on defense all night, as the Dukes cruised to 31 fourth-quarter points on 11-16 shooting from the field. Despite junior Bre Cavanaugh and DeWolfe combining for 42 points, Fordham’s defense, in a surprising twist, couldn’t keep the Rams in the game as Fordham fell to 10-5 in the A-10 with one game remaining.

As for the conference standings, Fordham will almost assuredly be the third seed in the A-10 Tournament, which starts next week. Because the team fell short of a top-two seed, it will have to play a game on Tuesday afternoon against either George Mason or St. Joe’s. Fordham takes on St. Joe’s at home on Saturday in the team’s final game of the year; if Fordham wins, the Rams could possibly play the Hawks once again on Tuesday. Saturday’s game tips off at 2 p.m. in Fordham’s final tune-up before the Rams attempt to defend their title next week. 

The team will look to start playing its best basketball at the right time, something it did last year but did not do against Duquesne on Tuesday.