BY NATALIE HEAVREN STAFF WRITER
In the first half of their homestand, women’s basketball suffered two close losses to St. Bonaventure and Duquesne, falling to 0-12 in conference play and 3-16 overall.
Here are three takeaways from the weekend:
RACHEL BALZER IS FINDING HER PLACE
Friday night, redshirt freshman Balzer had 15 points, three rebounds, one assist and one steal. On Feb. 14, she led the team with 14 points, two rebounds, two assists and two steals.
“I’m finally starting to find my place on this team and finally finding consistency,” Balzer said.
She later added, “But I can’t thank my teammates enough. They’ve had my back during my shooting slump. It feels good to finally be able to be out there, helping and making an impact. My coaches have believed in me and they’re always saying ‘next shot, next shot’ so it’s a mentality that I’ve had to get.”
While Balzer has struggled at times this season, she has scored double digits in four of the last six games. With her peaking at the right time, Mason is one step closer to winning its first conference game of the season.
THREE-POINT SHOOTING HAS IMPROVED
Mason has struggled from behind the arc for most of the season but was finally able to find a rhythm last weekend.
The team made eight three-pointers against St. Bonaventure and a season-high 10 against Duquesne.
The Patriots will need to continue making three-pointers to remain competitive in their upcoming games.
THERE IS LITTLE ROOM FOR ERROR
As head coach Nyla Milleson has mentioned throughout the season, the team has a minimal margin for error.
For the first time this season in conference play, Mason had two games in a row decided by 10 or fewer points.
Balzer reflected on the team’s progress but acknowledged that there was still work to do.
“We talked about it before the game today, but there’s no room for taking players off, there’s no room for that little mistake. Right now our room for error is very slim … Now we got to get over that hump, and we [have] got to stay focused [and we have] got to be locked in,” Balzer said.
The team will need to make fewer mistakes if they are going to get their first conference win of the season.
Mason returns to the court on Feb. 20 to take on Davidson at 7 p.m.