Wednesday, February 7, 2007
By Mike Ballard
CAMDEN Senior forward Lauren Byrne (Paulsboro, NJ/Gloucester Catholic) scored 14 points to lead four Rowan University women’s basketball players in double figures as the Profs topped Rutgers University-Camden, 77-56, in a New Jersey Athletic Conference game here Wednesday night.
Rowan improves to 9-13 overall and 2-8 in the NJAC, snapping a five-game losing streak. Rutgers-Camden falls to 8-14 and 2-9 with its third straight loss.
Rowan took an early lead and never trailed, with the teams being tied only once at 2-2. Byrne scored the first six points of the game for the Profs, on her way to eight at halftime. She tied for team-high honors at the half with freshman guard Danielle Rohe (Dumont, NJ/Dumont).
In a first half filled with 33 fouls, the Profs built a 40-20 lead by halftime, aided by 20-for-24 shooting from the foul line.
Junior guard Imani Hafiz (Franklinville, NJ/Delsea Regional) had 14 of the Lady Raptors’ 20 first-half points. She also had three steals all in the first half to pass the 100-steal plateau for the second straight year and become the only player in program history to notch a pair of 100-steal seasons. She had 105 during her sophomore campaign and now has 102 this season.
Rohe and sophomore guard Brynn DeGroff (Wildwood Crest, NJ/Wildwood) each added 12 points for the Profs, joining Byrne in double figures. Freshman forward Jessica Nimbley (Middletown, NJ/St. John Vianney) added 10 points for the Profs.
DeGroff had a team-high eight rebounds for the Profs, who held a 50-32 advantage off the boards. Byrne and junior center Katie Shaw (Wallington, NJ/Wallington) each added seven boards.
Hafiz finished with game-high totals of 20 points and 13 rebounds, along with her three steals, before fouling out in the second half. She was one of three Raptors to foul out in a game which featured 59 fouls and 73 foul shots.
Junior guard Amber Parker (Pennsauken, NJ/Pennsauken) added a career-high 12 points for the Raptors.
Rowan University returns to action Saturday when it entertains The College of New Jersey in a 3 p.m. NJAC game.
Rutgers-Camden has three games remaining on its schedule. The Lady Raptors play an 7 p.m. non-conference game at Gwynedd-Mercy College Monday, then travel to The College of New Jersey Feb. 14 for a 6 p.m. NJAC contest. They close the season at home on Feb. 17 when they face conference foe Kean University at 1 p.m. That game will serve as Senior Day for the Raptors’ lone senior, Karen Carter (Pennsauken, NJ/Pennsauken).