YOUNGSTOWN STATE DiGregorio expects more despite youth
The Penguins play Wright State Thursday at Beeghly Center.
By PETE MOLLICA
VINDICATOR SPORTS STAFF
YOUNGSTOWN -- Although Ed DiGregorio has been around basketball for a long time, he hasn't been able to figure out what is wrong with this season's Youngstown State women's team.
DiGregorio, in his 19th season at YSU, understands that his team is a young one and attributes some of the problems to that, but the 17th game of the season looms and he expects more.
"You can live with young mistakes early in the year, but the season is now half over and we're still making them," DiGregorio said.
The Penguins (6-10, 3-3 Horizon League) play host to Wright State Thursday night at 7 in Beeghly Center.
Disappointing loss: YSU had a very disappointing performance against Horizon leader Wisconsin-Green Bay on Monday, a 76-48 loss in which the Penguins fell behind early and never challenged.
That came just four days after Youngstown State played one of its best games of the season in a 64-56 victory at Illinois-Chicago.
"We just don't play a full 40 minutes," DiGregorio said. "There is always a letdown somewhere and it has been killing us."
Youth: The Penguins have just two seniors on the team and only 6-foot-2 center Jen Horner is a starter. DiGregorio has been starting two freshmen and a sophomore alongside Horner and junior point guard Maggie Johnston.
Horner has probably been the most consistent player all season, averaging 10 points and seven rebounds per game.
Freshman Jen Perugini played solidly to start the season but has been erratic of late. The other freshman starter, Barbora Fabianova, scored 17 points against UIC then had just three against UW-Green Bay.
Sophomore forward Heather Harris, who was leading the team in scoring (13.0), also had just three points against UW-Green Bay.
The defense has been inconsistent and there have been too many turnovers, according to DiGregorio. In the Green Bay loss the Penguins had 18 turnovers which produced 25 points for the Phoenix.
Raiders: Wright State (3-14, 1-5 Horizon) has also struggled this season. The Raiders, who have a first-year coach in Bridget Williams, are 2-7 on the road this season.
Thursday's game is the first of four straight at home for the Penguins and DiGregorio is hoping that will be what his team needs to get back on track.
Youngstown State is 3-1 at Beeghly Center, losing only to Bowling Green in the season opener.