Story by DJ Pigg, Staff writer
Racer women’s basketball’s early season struggles continued against Butler University today, as they had a hard time scoring in their 88-59 loss to the Bulldogs.
Although the Racers forced 22 turnovers, they couldn’t capitalize on the extra possessions, as they only scored 11 points off those turnovers. Butler’s zone defense seemed to do its job, forcing the Racers to take 25 of their 59 shot attempts from outside the arc.
Defensively the Racers struggled guarding the post, as Head Coach Rechelle Turner predicted they would, due to their lack of size. Tori Schickel, the 6’1 junior forward for the Bulldogs, finished the game with 29 points and 8 rebounds on 12-of-19 shooting and a perfect 5-of-5 from the charity stripe.
The Racers were led by senior forward Ke’Shunan James for the second-straight game, as she had 21 points and 8 rebounds on 6-of-17 shooting. Turner said that they weren’t able to get James the ball as much as they would have liked to due to Butler’s zone.
“They ran zone, but they had a spy on KJ at all times,” Turner said. “In those cases, other people have to step up and make plays, and we don’t have anyone doing that right now. Today we couldn’t get the ball to her [James] and when we did get the ball to her I feel like she was frustrated and made some questionable decisions.”
Although the loss puts the Racers at an 0-2 start to the season, Turner continues to stress that the non-conference schedule was made difficult to prepare her players for OVC play come late December and that she is seeing positives from her team.
“This schedule is not for the faint of heart,” Turner said. “We are still continuing to try to find ourselves. We don’t know who we are as an identity of this team. I found some positives today. I thought some kids stepped up and played hard regardless of the score. No one said it would be easy. We are going to continue to do what we do to develop this team. It’s not about winning in the non-conference right now. It’s about being ready for December 28th.”
Murray State will again have a couple days to prepare before their game against Northern Kentucky University (0-2) at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 18 in the CFSB Center.