While the rest of Murray State’s student body celebrated the holidays, the Racers were hard at work with eight games over their Christmas schedule, finishing with a 2-6 record over the month long period and a 5-11 record overall.
The team’s last game resulted in a teeth-clenching 73-57 win over Jacksonville State Monday in the CFSB Center.
The Racers had consistent shot leaders such as junior guard Mariah Robinson, who tallied 18 points against Evansville on Dec. 10 and sophomore guard Erica Burgess, who has won six OVC Newcomer of the Week awards already this season. Burgess dominated the offensive side of the ball alongside Robinson when they scored 19 points each against Mississippi on Dec. 19.
Four of the Racers six losses were by less than 10 points and Cross said it’s imperative the roster stay healthy.
“The girls have had to revamp their game since the injuries,” Head Coach Rob Cross said.
The Racers often start strong with point advantages over opponents, but leads are lost with little time left in the second half.
Defensive aggression has also stunted the team’s progress. When the Racers lost to Eastern Kentucky they were out-rebounded 48-41.
However, the Racers have a strong advantage of shooting beyond the arc as well as an improved field goal percentage from the beginning of the season with 33 percent 3-point shooting against Tennessee Tech.
“No question (we’re) a talented team,” Cross said. “We move past the disappointments and try to learn from them, as well as focus on the positives.”
Cross said he has no doubt the team will feel motivated to improve during the rest of the season.
The team’s next game is against Southern Illinois-Edwardsville at 1 p.m Saturday in Edwardsville, Ill.