Gators win 61-49 over Oberlin College


Meghan Hayman

Emma Pellicano, ’16, takes a shot against Oberlin College on Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016. The Gators finished the game with a winning score of 61-49 against the Yeowomen.

The Allegheny women’s basketball team began a two-game win streak as they completed a season sweep of Oberlin College in search of a top-four seed in the conference tournament on Wednesday, Feb. 10 in the NCAC matchup in the David V. Wise Center.

The Gators (12-10, 7-6) handed the Yeowomen (10-12, 4-9) their second loss to Allegheny this season as they beat Oberlin College 61-49 and created a two-game edge over Wittenberg University for the fourth seed in the NCAC Tournament.

Freshman guard, Delaney Arbore led all scorers with 18 points, while the senior duo of Jessica Mrdjenovich and Emma Pellicano added eight points each. Rachel Vigliotti, ’16, had a game-high five steals against the Yeowomen and contributed seven points offensively. The Gators also forced a season-high 35 turnovers in the victory.

With the win, Head Coach Kate Costanzo believes her Gators can carry their streak into the conference tournament and compete with their competitive NCAC opponents.

“We have ourselves positioned in fourth place. The goal is to maintain a top-four standing so that we host a first round playoff game, which has been one of our team goals since the beginning of the season,” Costanzo said. “We need to continue to focus on getting better with each practice and game. If we continue forcing turnovers, focusing on out-rebounding our opponents, and finishing shots around the rim, we will be in great shape.”

Amanda Beebe, ’18, said the team needs to work on a few things to keep up their success during the remainder of the season.

“We need to work on making shots and staying composed under pressure, as well as executing our plays in order to make a successful run in tournament play,” Beebe said.

Madison Caufield, ’18, is coming off a recent knee injury but said her personal goals as well as the team’s goals remain the same on the season.

“With three regular season games left and the possibility of a long playoff run, our focus is to continue to work on the fundamentals which our key. Having missed the most of the season because of an injury, I’m always pushing to make sure my knee is in a good condition so I can feel comfortable on the court and make successful contributions to the team to help them as much as possible,” Caufield said. “We need to go into each game just as we have in these past couple and blow teams off the court. We have great potential and when we play as a team, we are unstoppable.”

Costanzo believes that the senior leadership on the team has contributed to a lot of the Gator’s success.

“Our seniors have done an excellent job of leading this team and forming a great team chemistry. They truly care about their teammates and model hard work and positivity each day at practice,” Costanzo said. “The blend of experience, talent and positive energy is our key to success. We are a dangerous team when everyone plays to their potential and excels in their role.”

Mrdjenovich, one of the many senior leaders on the team, has high hopes for the Gators’ as the regular season comes to a close.

“This year our main goal has been to make it to the NCAC finals, compete, and ultimately win the championship. I think that right now we need to focus on coming out strong to start each half and maintaining our high intensity level throughout the entire game to finish the season strong,” Mrdjenovich said. “Our defense is what propelled us through the entire season, so I think if we keep up our defensive intensity and successfully press each team, we will see big things happen throughout the remainder of the season.”

As a senior, Mrdjenovich knows she’s approaching her last college basketball games in her successful Allegheny career, but that’s not stopping her work ethic.

“For me, I’m just trying to play my best and fulfill the role that will help the team be successful. It’s starting to sink in that it’s almost over, so all the seniors are really giving it our all and trying to go out with a bang,” Mrdjenovich said. “Most importantly, we’re finding ways to play for each other and have fun in our last few weeks.”

Ifeyinwa Uwazie, ’16, spoke on her senior season coming to a close and what she hopes to see happen for the remainder of the the Gators’ season.

“I just try and make the most of every moment I’m on the court and the time I have left with the team. We are definitely working towards winning a conference championship so we need to continue to play well together and for each other,” Uwazie said.

Allegheny is back on the road this Saturday, Feb. 13 at 1 p.m. against Ohio Wesleyan to begin their last road trip of the regular season as they try and maintain their position in the NCAC standings.