The 2021-22 season has been full of obstacles for Waynesburg women’s basketball, adding to the list Monday night in Pittsburgh against Chatham.
The Lady J’s (1-14, 1-8 PAC) dropped their seventh-straight 66-54 facing the Cougars (10-4, 4-3) but battled throughout the first three quarters before losing their grasp in the fourth.
The game was tied at 43 after 30 minutes of action, but Chatham outscored Waynesburg 23-12 in the final 10 minutes to close the gap and shut the door on a possible upset.
Senior Brooke Fuller led all scorers with 16 points on 7-10 shooting and eight rebounds in her first game after reaching 1,000 points Saturday against Grove City.
“We had an offensive game plan going into the game which included the bigger lineup,” Fuller said. “We wanted to bend their defense as much as we could to move the ball around and get open shots.”
Head coach Sam Jones was commanding the sidelines Monday night after missing the past two games due to COVID-19 protocols, resulting in Andrea Orlosky being named interim head coach in her first season on the staff.
“It was great to be back,” Jones said. “Just grateful for the opportunity to be there again.”
Kacey Kastroll dished seven assists and hit two threes along with Avery Robinson behind the arc, but freshman Madisen Dayton made the biggest impact alongside Fuller down low.
“It’s different playing with another forward, all other years we usually ran with 4 guards and one forward,” Fuller said. “I’m hoping I can set this team up and help her along with the other forwards step into the position so when I leave they will be solid.”
Dayton, who also plays on the Waynesburg volleyball team, finished the night contributing 11 points and five rebounds.
“She was filling in for a missing starter and did a great job,” Jones said. “She is a high motor player who is learning the college game. She works hard and is improving daily.”
Chatham shot a meager 35.6% and registered 19-27 shots from the free-throw line but saw four players reach double figures. Emily Durkee and Julianna Skowron each totaled 12 each with Brittani Smith (11) and Aurielle Bruner guiding the Cougars.
Waynesburg was outscored by 20 points 31-11 off the bench.
The Jackets sit in the No. 9 spot of the Presidents’ Athletic Conference only ahead of winless Franciscan.
“We have progressively gotten better as the season has gone on,” Fuller said. “We are SO close to another win we can feel it. Once we start playing a full 4 quarters locked in we are going to see different results.”
The Yellow Jackets return to the Rudy Marisa Fieldhouse Wednesday facing St. Vincent at 5:30 p.m.