Edinboro’s undefeated women’s basketball team earns Division II No.2 in-the-nation ranking
What does Edinboro’s amazing women’s basketball team have in common with ABC’s Good Morning America co-host Robin Roberts? Plenty! The television star journalist wore an entire tartan outfit before her national audience the morning of November 18 just to help launch the Fighting Scots’ 2011-12 season.
And a fitting launch it was by the former Southeastern Louisiana University basketball standout who helped commemorate 85 years of Edinboro’s women’s athletics at an Erie event last September. Roberts’ national well-wishes was just the beginning of a season that saw the women’s team off to a 23-0 start (as of mid-February).
Actually, when the year began the Edinboro women’s basketball team was picked 23rd in the USA Today/ESPN Division II Top 25. But as the weeks rolled by and the Fighting Scots kept winning, Edinboro slowly made the climb up the charts.
Now, with less than a month to go, Edinboro is just one of just two women’s basketball teams in Division II yet to taste defeat.
As veteran coach Stan Swank guided his Fighting Scots to their incredible start one year after finishing 26-4 and winning their second-ever PSAC championship, the Scots have climbed all the way to second in the latest national rankings. It’s their highest ranking ever as they mow down the opposition, defeating ranked teams, including a sweep of Erie County rival Gannon University.
“It’s an exciting time right now to be associated with one of the best teams in school history,” related Swank. “It’s incredible to watch their unselfishness and they personify the term ‘team’. Hopefully they can continue to make a long run into the playoffs.”
As of early February, the Fighting Scots featured great balance with four players scoring in double figures. Leading the way is junior guard Kiara Brown, who averages 14.7 ppg. Samantha Blazetic, a 6’3” junior, adds 13.9 ppg. and 6.1 rpg. with 41 blocked shots. Seniors Renee’ Brown and raven Metz average 11.6 and 11.3 ppg., respectively. Senior forward Micki Cerchiaro only averages 5.8 ppg., but she is the leading rebounder (6.3 rpg.) and also a tenacious defender. Finally, sophomore Darche’ Jackson comes in at 9.3 ppg. and has a team-leading 67 assist.
Hopes are running high that Edinboro will repeat as PSAC champs and then, the sky’s the limit!
As for Roberts, Edinboro University’s year-long commemoration of 85 years of women’s varsity athletics was highlighted September 17 when the talented, Emmy Award-winning journalist helped the University to raise some $85,000 during a special banquet at Erie’s Ambassador Conference Center.
Roberts, in addition to her role as a respected news anchor, is also a distinguished college athlete. During her local appearance, she was presented with a Fighting Scots basketball jersey, and a tartan outfit, which she wore during a segment of Good Morning American on Friday, November 18, speaking candidly about her appearance at Edinboro University and the start of the Fighting Scots women’s basketball season.
Edinboro, as some might know, is the first of the Pennsylvania colleges to be invited to join the National Women’s Athletic Association. The University observed 85 years of women’s athletics by bringing together past, present and future athletes to celebrate this significant milestone.
It’s still not too late to support women’s athletics through the Advancement Office – and, of course, by attending any of the Fighting Scots women’s athletic events at Edinboro and other venues, especially as the most memorable basketball season ever winds down.
Watch ABC’s Good Morning America clip here.