Falcons look to grow each day, put together pieces to come out on top of Thanksgiving Classic during break

Womens+Basketball

Women’s Basketball

Tara Jones and Tara Jones

The BG women’s basketball team will spend its Thanksgiving break traveling to Los Angeles for the DoubleTree LA Westside Thanksgiving Classic.

In the opening round of play, the Falcons will face UC Irvine Nov. 11 at 4 p.m. In the next round, on Nov. 29, the Falcons will face either UAB or Loyola Marymount.

“This will be a long road trip cross-country,” said head coach Jennifer Roos. “We’ll be together a lot spending time on a holiday together. I think this has the opportunity to be a special trip for our team and will help our chemistry even more.”

That team chemistry has been one of the Falcons’ strong suits thus far this season, especially with a fluctuating lineup.

“Each situation is going to create different lineups depending upon whether or not someone is scoring offensively or how well they’re doing defensively, or if they’re getting in foul trouble,” Roos said. “It’s still really early on in regards to seeing a consistent lineup. So much has happened in these three games so far that it has created a lot of different lineup combinations for us.”

The Falcons are coming off a 60-50 comeback win at Milwaukee this past Saturday. Sophomore Rachel Konieczki fueled the late rally with her shooting from near and behind the three-point arch despite a rough shooting performance from the Falcons.

“It has been a little bit of a roller coaster ride in terms of field goal percentages per half,” Roos said. “Three out of six halves [shooting 42 percent or higher] is solid, but it’s not anywhere where we need to be to be successful.”

Roos said in order to continue winning games, the team will need better consistency at the offensive end.

“We’re fortunate to be 2-1, we could easily be 3-0 or 0-3 with how inconstant we have shot the ball,” she said. “I think a lot of our kids are trying very hard and almost over trying in a sense. They want it to go in so badly that they’re trying so hard and it’s not going in.”

In order to improve that offensive consistency, Roos said the team needs to relax.

“It would be different if I felt we weren’t getting good shots, but we have been getting good shots,” Roos said. “They just haven’t been going in.”

With not being able to put consistent halves of shooting together, the team has found themselves in close games like with Milwaukee.

“Playing in close games, you can’t simulate that in practice no matter how hard you try,” Roos said. “I’m excited we’re learning this way in games so early on because I think it will only benefit our team later on.”

The team’s biggest goal throughout the season and during the DoubleTree LA Westside Thanksgiving Classic is to improve one day at a time.

“I think we’re seeing growth every day in practice and in games. At the end of the day we have been going forward a little bit each time,” Roos said. “The learning curve for this team is really steep, but that will allow more opportunity for greater growth from start to finish and not a lot of teams have that much opportunity to grow like this team can.”