By William Bowman
The Daily Item
In the weeks and months leading up to his first season as Bucknell women’s basketball coach, Aaron Roussell continuously stressed to his team that it had to outwork opponents to be successful.
In the opening loss at Xavier, Roussell saw the effort but the Bison came up short. In Wednesday’s home opener at Sojka Pavilion, it was St. Francis (Pa.) that outworked the Bison, which frustrated the first-year coach and led the Red Flash to a 62-54 victory.
Alli Williams overpowered the Bison with 22 points and 19 rebounds and St. Francis (2-0) outscored Bucknell by 20 in the paint to drop the Bison to 0-2.
It was a disappointing home debut for Roussell, not just because of the loss, but because of the effort his team showed.
“We’ve tried to really instill that and I hope we learned that lesson,” Roussell said. “I think if we don’t get outworked there is a different result. That’s not saying (St. Francis) didn’t deserve to win, but I’ve said it a lot to these guys that we will never let rebounding and effort be a reason for losing a game. I thought both of those things got us.”
The teams combined to make just 39 of 130 shots (30 percent), which created 97 total rebounds. St. Francis shot just 32 percent for the game and pulled down 51 boards, while the Bison hit 26.8 percent from the field and had 46 rebounds.
But the Red Flash controlled the game from the paint, outscoring Bucknell 36-16.