With the East Carolina men’s basketball team in Orlando for its game Tuesday night, it was my privilege to fill in for Jeff Charles on “The Jeff Lebo Radio Show” Monday night.
Filling in for Coach Lebo was East Carolina women’s coach Heather Macy.
It turned out to be a most entertaining hour. A nice crowd gathered at Logan’s Roadhouse for the show, which plays inside the restaurant for fans to hear each week. I was surprised at the crowd, because many were still on holiday status with Monday serving as the day the New Year’s holiday was observed.
Macy’s Pirates dropped their first American Athletic Conference game on Saturday, losing to Tulane, 61-46. Next up is a trip on Wednesday to take on unbeaten and top ranked Connecticut.
Heather was obviously disappointed with her team’s league opener.
“We were playing well and right in it, and then we really struggled shooting the basketball,” Macy said during the radio show. “I didn’t think it was possible to shoot less than eight percent, but that’s what we were shooting for a while.”
ECU’s ladies will take a two-game losing streak to UConn.
Macy says her team is still learning how to play for 40 minutes.
“We did a nice job most of the game against William & Mary,” Macy said. “We just didn’t finish. We have to learn to finish.”
Macy and company are 9-5 on the season. Those five losses have all come against some pretty tough competition when you look at the RPI, the ratings percentage index that is such an important part of college basketball.
Auburn (20 RPI), Tulane (34 RPI), Charlotte (51 RPI) and West Virginia (55 RPI) make up for of the five losses. The fifth loss was against the Tribe, (105 RPI).
East Carolina is currently 94th in the RPI.
It certainly doesn’t get any easier as Macy & Company travel north.
“We are going up there to win the game,” said Macy. “We’ve seen UConn a bunch over the last couple of years and certainly know what to expect.”
This will be the seventh matchup between East Carolina and UConn since New Year’s Eve of 2014.
“We want to take the game in 5-minute segments,” said Macy. “We want to win as many of those 5-minute segments that we can.”
The Huskies are simply on a different planet then the rest of women’s college basketball. UConn has won 88 consecutive games, a run that includes a pair of national championships.
They are the first women’s team to win four consecutive national titles, and are certainly in line for a fifth one come March.
Over the course of this 88-game winning streak, UConn has won all but two of the games by ten points or more. The Huskies’ last loss was to Stanford in the fall of 2014.
The numbers are more than impressive. They are mind-boggling!
Still, the twinkle in Heather Macy’s eye tells us that her team will go to UConn and battle.
It may be even more that David vs. Goliath.
After all, David only had to face one giant.