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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Sports

Women’s basketball struggles in the early season


Junior guard Angela Harris is one of the players that needs to hit their stride for the Cougars to make a run for a higher seed in the American Athletic Conference. | Kathryn Lenihan/The Daily Cougar

 

UH’s women’s basketball team has been a mixed bag this season. The Cougars have played tougher teams than they have in past seasons, but sitting at 8-8 on the year, UH is hoping to get on a hot streak and string together some big wins.

The Cougars fell short against a ranked opponent in the first game of the season but recovered to win a double-overtime thriller against Georgia Tech.

UH has yet to gain any meaningful momentum since then. The Cougars have only had two wins in a row once this season and have been up and down.

The team still has a chance to turn its season around, but there are some glaring deficiencies the Cougars need to address.

For one, the only losses in the Fertitta Center have been taken by the women’s basketball team. The men’s team has had well-documented success at home and has not lost at home this season.

The women’s team has not won a single home game since its victory over Georgia Tech. The Cougars have a positive road record at 6-3, but until UH can solve its home struggles, it will not achieve the success it had last season.

The Cougars are also lacking in production from its most influential players. Most of the team returned from last year, but the Cougars are experiencing a team-wide slump.

Last year, the team had three players that averaged double-digit scoring. The scoring leader, junior guard Jasmyne Harris, averaged nearly 20 points a game in the 2017-18 season.

This year, Harris is scoring 16 points per game and is the only player on the team averaging more than 10 points per game.

Harris will need more production from her co-star, junior guard Angela Harris. She has given up more turnovers than thrown assists this season. The Cougars are counting on her to play through her struggles and help the team get to the heights it is seeking.

Even with all the struggles the team is experiencing, there are still some silver linings the Cougars can take away.

Many of the teams that UH has faced this year had at least 20 wins last season. The competition has been intense, and to come out of the heap with a nearly .500 record is something the Cougars can live with as long as they perform well against inter-conference foes.

Another silver lining is the Cougars are keeping most of the games competitive. Even in Houston’s game against UConn, the first half was relatively close until the Huskies pulled away late in the half and in the second.

The 20-point loss was the closest Houston has even been to beating Connecticut. The Cougars’ previous five losses were by 60, 49, 39, 59 and 50 points, which shows that this team has strong aspects compared to past years.

As long as UH can continue to keep games close, chances are it will be able to get a couple of morale-boosting wins.

The Cougars still have a lot to prove to be considered one of the top teams in the conference, but there is still time left in the season. If UH can turn its season around, it will continue the recent trend of successful UH basketball teams.

Grade: C-

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