EYES ON THE GAME
BOSTON – Suffolk has a hectic 2019-20 opening weekend as the 37th edition of women's basketball tips off at the Larry E. and Michael S. Smith Court against Keene State Friday, Nov. 8 at 6:30 p.m., before the Rams hit the road the following day, Saturday, Nov. 9 for a 1 p.m. showdown at Western New England.
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RUN IT BACK
Suffolk compiled an 18-7 overall regular-season record and secured a spot in the GNAC postseason for the 24th consecutive campaign behind a 9-3 league ledger.
As the fourth-seed, the Rams advanced to the semifinals for the 11th time in program history and second straight season, but saw their season end to the eventual conference champions Saint Joseph's (Maine) to finish 19-8 on the year.
The duo provided a one-two punch for the blue-and-gold as the leaders offensively and defensively. DiCecco paced the pace offensive with 17.0 ppg and 4.5 apg and added 6.0 rpg on the boards. Hackett had a double-double of 11.5 ppg and 11.4 rpg.
STARTING FIVE: QUICK HITS ON THE UPCOMING SEASON
Days before the official tip-off of Suffolk's 2019-20 slate, GoSuffolkRams.com gave Ram Nation a quick glimpse at five hot topics to watch for in the 37th edition of Suffolk's women's hoops. Click the link below for your chance at checking out the five things to keep an eye out for this year.
MORE READING: Starting Five: Women's Basketball's 37th Season
Headlining the core turners is the dynamic duo of Jenni-Rose DiCecco and Alexis Hackett. DiCecco, a two-time all-region selection as a sophomore, posted team-best numbers in points (17.0) and assists (4.5) a year ago, and was second on the squad on the boards. Hackett, meanwhile, averaged a double-double of 11.4 ppg and 11.4 rpg.
Juniors Jordan Hipwell (8.5 ppg, 5.1 rpg) and Gabriella DeComo (6.3 ppg, 2.9 rpg) are back in the line-up as well with their classmate Rachel LaSaracina and sophomores Natalie Fraioli, Lauren Hill, Allie Lopes (9.2 ppg, 40. rpg) and Emily Welling looking to contribute more this year.
IN WITH THE NEW
A handful of new faces will put on the blue-and-gold jersey for Suffolk women's basketball as head coach Ed Leyden added a "solid, competitive, tough group," of four new players to the Rams' 2019-20 ranks.
Three true freshmen will make their collegiate debut at Suffolk, while Skylar Rojik transferred to Beacon Hill for her sophomore season from Fairfield. Rams' rookies Alli Cavallo and Kaleigh Matulonis will add to the team's back court strength, while Lily Patneaude and Rojik are swing players.
MORE READING: Rams Rookies: 2019-20 Women's Basketball
Suffolk's 13-player roster represents four states with the bulk of the contingent coming from the Bay State in eight Massachusetts natives. New York has a trio of residents with one student-athlete from Connecticut and Rhode Island, respectively.
Suffolk's sophomores anchor a well-balanced mix with five members from the Class of 2022. There are a quartet of juniors, three true freshmen and a solo senior, Alexis Hackett.
The Rams' baker dozen is broken down into six true guards, a pair of forwards and five swing players.
Ten days away from tip-off of the 37th season, Suffolk women's basketball head coach Ed Leyden has unveiled that junior Jenni-Rose DiCecco and senior Alexis Hackett will team up as the 2019-20 co-captains.
- Suffolk is 18-18 all-time in season openers and 14-11 under head coach Ed Leyden.
- The Rams look to return to the win column on day one of the season after slipping to Western New England last year, 66-58.
- Suffolk will play in front of its home crowd for the second straight season in the season debut and third time overall. The blue-and-gold is 0-2 when lifting the lid on a calendar on its home hardwood.
- The Rams and Keene State will meet in the blue-an-gold's first game of a campaign for the first time.
WATCH AND SEE
Head coach Ed Leyden sat down with GoSuffolkRams.com to preview the Rams' 2019-20 campaign. To hear what Leyden had to say and get a glimpse inside the Rams' training session, click the video below.
Suffolk women's basketball was picked to finish third in a vote by the conference's head coaches as the league unveiled the 2019-20 GNAC Preseason Coaches' Poll.
|2019-10 GNAC WOMEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON COACHES' POLL|
2. Albertus Magnus
4. St. Joseph's (Maine)
5. Colby Sawyer
7. Anna Maria
8. Johnson & Wales
12. St. Joseph (Conn.)
|2018-19 GNAC RECORD
Keene State is coming off a down year that saw the Owls go 4-21 overall.
Keith Boucher brings back six student-athletes from a year ago including leading scorer and rebounder Lilly Shimon, who supplied 11.0 ppg and added 5.2 rpg to the defensive unit. Tamra Gonyea (7.0 ppg) and Kenzie Bennett (4.5 rpg) are back in the fold as well.
INSIDE THE SERIES
- Suffolk and Keene State will meet for the third time overall, first since 2010.
- The Rams trail the all-time series with the Owls, 0-2.
- The blue-and-gold last met Keene in the ECAC Tournament March 3, 2010, which the Owls won, 84-54.
GET TO KNOW THE GOLDEN BEARS
Western New England is riding the momentum from a historic 2018-19 where the Golden Bears captured the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) crown for the first time in program history to make the first-ever trip to the Big Dance.
Eleven letterwinners are back from last season's team that went 20-9 overall highlighted by all-league honorees Meghan Orbann and Emily Farrell. Obrann averaged 12.7 points and 7.3 rebounds per game, while Farrell contributed a team-high 13.7 points and 4.1 assist per outing. Courntye Carlson, who provided xxx ppg, will also be a player to lookout for Saturday.
INSIDE THE SERIES
- Suffolk and Western New England will meet for the 12th time since the series begin in 1995-96.
- The Rams lead the all-time meetings, 7-4, despite slipping to the Golden Bears in the last to outings, including the 2018-19 debut, which WNE won, 66-58, in Boston.
- The blue-and-gold last defeated Wester New England Feb. 15, 2017, 64-61.
Suffolk entertains Emerson Tuesday, Nov. 12 at 7 p.m.