SHU Basketball pushes for playoffs

As the men’s and women’s basketball teams at Seton Hill wind down their season, the mentality going into the post-season is full of hope and high expectations. Both of the teams sport a record that hovers over the .500 mark and both the teams are hopeful for a playoff bid.

Although both of the teams are potentially on the playoff bubble, they are highly regarded teams and have been taken very seriously in the PSAC sports conference. They have both pulled out wins over higher seeded teams within the conference to give them recognition around the league. Both have chances to pull out some wins in the remaining games of the season to secure a spot in playoffs.

Leadership positions will be defined in these moments of pressure nearing the end of the regular season and some of the leading point scorers for the season are stepping into these roles.

Sophomore guard, Lindsey Mifsud, averaging 7.8 points a game for the Lady Griffins, crosses over looking for a teammate to assist the ball to. Photo courtesy of athletics.setonhill.edu

Sophomore guard, Lindsey Mifsud, averaging 7.8 points a game for the Lady Griffins, crosses over looking for a teammate to assist the ball to. Photo courtesy of athletics.setonhill.edu

Lindsey Mifsud, an Erie, Pa. native, is the third leading point scorer on the women’s basketball team and has been a big contributor for the two years she has been on the Hill. She is going to have to step into a leadership role as the season comes to a close and the Lady Griffins fight for a playoff bid.

With the Lady Griffins final game against IUP, this will be the deciding factor whether they receive a spot in the playoffs or not. SHU would have to win and hope that Slippery Rock University loses to Pitt-Johnstown in order to get the sixth and final seed. If both teams win or lose, the Griffins should get the nod after already beating the Rock previously twice this year.

Although the ladies have been hovering the record of .500 the entire season, some of the games that were a turning point were Slippery Rock where Mifsud said, “It was one of the first games when the entire team seemed to play in sync and together for the entire 40 minutes and we were able to pull out a close win.”

Senior shooting guard, #5 Kameron Taylor, dribbles with the ball looking to split the defense and get to the hoop. Photo courtesy of J.Palmer

Senior shooting guard, #5 Kameron Taylor, dribbles with the ball looking to split the defense and get to the hoop. Photo courtesy of J.Palmer

It is arguable that the west conference started to recognize the Lady Griffins when they came out with an 83-81 win against the number one ranked team, California University of Pennsylvania, halfway through the season and this win will be factored into the decision making going into the post-season.

The sophomore Mifsud said that being a leader means, “having short sightedness and focusing on the next practice and the upcoming game and not worrying too much about what some may consider a bigger game than others.”

As far as the men’s team goes, they are wearing a similar record with a comparable playoff situation. The lead point scorer, Kameron Taylor, who is averaging 20.6 points a game, is a senior residing in Landover, Md.

Sophomore guard Trevor Blondin, from Haymarket VA, scores with a floater against Gannon University. Photo courtesy of J.Palmer

Sophomore guard Trevor Blondin, from Haymarket VA, scores with a floater against Gannon University. Photo courtesy of J.Palmer

Taylor is a feared player in the PSAC conference who is capable of taking over any game. Recently Taylor scored the game winning 3-pointer at the buzzer against fellow PSAC power Gannon University and has earned player of the week numerous times throughout the season (check the video out via Twitter on the Westmoreland Sports account).

A respected leader on the team, Taylor explains his definition of leadership nearing the end of the season: “Most people would think that would mean scoring all the points or filling the stats but it actually means doing the intangibles and little things you don’t see on the court. The things like making sure the energy in practice is consistent, to make sure the team is focused for games, make sure the communication between coaches and players are clear, and be sure the team morale is up.”

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