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Penn College Women Seek Second Conference Championship


Last week, Pennsylvania College of Technology women’s basketball coach Ron Kodish was just hopeful of getting his team a return ticket to the Bryce Jordan Center. Now that it has happened, he wants it all.

The defending champion Lady Wildcats will face Penn State Delaware at 4 p.m. Friday in a Penn State University Athletic Conference semifinal at Bryce Jordan in University Park. Penn State Harrisburg and Penn State Schuylkill will square off at 2 p.m. that day in the other semifinal. The winners will clash for the championship at 10 a.m. Saturday, also at Bryce Jordan.

“It was quite an accomplishment to get back to Bryce Jordan this year,” Kodish said.

Although his team is 10-14 overall, eight of those losses were to NCAA Division III colleges. Against conference opponents, Penn College is 9-5, with one of those losses coming at the hands of Penn State Delaware, 62-55, on Jan. 24.

“They beat us the only time we played them, but they didn’t run away from us. I think that we’re a different team than we were, even at that point in the season,” Kodish said.

“Delaware probably has the most balanced team in the conference,” the Wildcats coach continued. “It has good skills at all of the positions, good depth, it doesn’t beat itself, it has good fundamentals. It handles pressure pretty well and applies a little pressure. It’s a well-rounded team and it is going to take a real good effort on our part, but we go into the game with confidence.”

In addition to starters Amanda Ault (Milan), Amanda Turner (Brackney), Erin Mahoney (Conneaut Valley), Amy Fassett (Ulster) and Brittany Blessard (Renovo), Kodish is hopeful that players like Rose Crowell (Temple Hills, Md.), Stephanie Rathbun (Oswayo Valley) and Meagan Morris (Herndon, Va.) step up like they did in the quarterfinal playoff win over Penn State Hazleton.

“You don’t get there (Final Four) without the intent of going all the way. We want to hold onto that trophy dearly,” Kodish said.

“We know what’s ahead of us. We know who we’re going to play on Friday.

“It’s just a gut feeling, but I think Harrisburg is going to end up there (in the final) again this year. They were there last year. When you are there, you know what it’s like, you know what the pressure is going to be like, you know the floor a little bit,” the coach said.

“Wouldn’t it be nice to have a Harrisburg-Penn College matchup on Saturday?” Kodish asked, then quickly added, “but let’s get there first!”

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