Blue Hose to Face Lamar in First Round of Women's Basketball Invitiational
PC holds a 19-27 all-time postseason record and will play its first non-conference tournament postseason game since falling to Virginia Union in the NCAA South Atlantic (Div. II) Regional on March 7, 2002, 65-56. PC has dropped its last eight non-regular season games.
Lamar brings a 21-10 record into Wednesday’s matchup, with a 12-6 Southland Conference marker for a third-place finish. The Lady Cardinals lead the Southland Conference in field goal percentage defense (36.1 percent) and rank second in scoring defense, scoring margin, three-point field goal percentage defense, steals and turnover margin. Kalis Loyd paces Lamar with 17.8 points and 7.2 rebounds per game.
Despite a comeback bid that held Radford to no field goals in the final 9:59, PC fell in the quarterfinals of the VisitMyrtleBeach.com Big South Women’s Basketball Championship at The HTC Center on March 8, 41-38. Shonda Burnside led PC with a game-high 14 points. Karlee Taylor added eight points while Mariah Pietrowski’s six rebounds led the team in boards.
A win over Lamar would send PC into the second round of the WBI and a trip to either Utah State or South Dakota for a game to be played on either Saturday, March 23 or Sunday, March 24.
PC earned three Big South Conference honors after the season, led by head coach Ronny Fisher earning the Coach of the Year award as voted by the League’s head coaches and media panel. Karlee Taylor was also voted Scholar-Athlete of the Year by the League’s sports information directors and Mariah Pietrowski was selected to the All-Big South Conference Second Team.
The Blue Hose have leaned heavily on experience this season, with Shonda Burnside, Dria David, Devin Fothergill, Chelsea Parker, Mariah Pietrowski and Olivia Towers-Solis returning for their senior years. Together, the six have combined for 626 games, 3,612 points and 2,228 rebounds in their time at PC. Parker appeared in her 117 game on March 8, setting a new Division I era record.
Head coach Ronny Fisher’s 51th career win on March 2 (31th win in the Big South) moved him closer to second place in the PC record books. Ranking third in program history, he stands 22 away from by both Randy Randall and Byron Rucker in second. Fisher, in his fifth year at the helm, set the school record for wins in the Division-I era (19) and Big South wins (14) this season.