The Stockton University women’s basketball team fell 85-60 to Rowan University at home Wednesday night.
The Ospreys, now 1-7, are still without a win in the New Jersey Athletic Conference, dropping to 0-4.
Rowan University improved to 4-4 (3-1 NJAC) with the win.
“They do a really good job with pressuring the ball,” Stockton coach Devin Jefferson said of Rowan’s signature full-court press. “We knew going into this game that we had to be really good passers, really good receivers and have an aggressive with breaking their press.”
Jefferson is making her head coaching debut this season with the Ospreys. A former Seton Hall player, she spent five years as an assistant at NCAA Division I Fairleigh Dickinson University before taking over the Ospreys.
The Profs started pulling away early. After a close first quarter, senior guard Olivia Rulon went on a 7-0 run by herself to help Rowan pull away. The Wildwood Catholic High School graduate finished with 14 points, two rebounds and two assists.
From there, the gap just widened.
Stockton still showed signs of life throughout the game.
There was the occasional scoring run, cutting the deficit to just three at one point, but Rowan would almost immediately respond. They maintained a double-digit lead for most of the game.
The Profs got a major boost on both ends from freshman center Ayanna Johnson. Averaging nine points and nine rebounds per game this season, she finished with 19 points and 13 rebounds Wednesday night.
Polar opposite performances in the final quarter put the game away.
Rowan shot 77.8 percent from the field, while Stockton only hit 15.8 percent of their shots.
Junior center McKenna Forry agreed with Coach Jefferson that the full-court press wore them down toward the end.
“They have a good press,” said the Hammonton graduate. “I think we broke it, but it still tires you down, so I think they’re pretty energetic.”
Forry scored a career-high 16 points on 8 for 11 shooting in the loss. She also had four rebounds.
Stockton freshman guard Emily Donzanti struggled from the field, shooting just 1 for 12, scoring three points — well below her season average of 12. She continued to make herself a threat with her passing, collecting eight assists in the game.
Jefferson sees a lot of potential in the young point guard.
“She’s a very tough kid,” Jefferson said of Donzanti. “She has a huge responsibility being a freshman point guard.”
“Being that leader and that offensive and defensive player is what we need (her) to do, and I thought she did a good job of that,” Jefferson added.
The Ospreys travel to Wayne, Passaic County, to take on William Paterson (3-5) 1 p.m. Saturday.