Gritty Effort From Rosanio Leads UMass
Jan. 31, 2006
It was Jan. 13 and the Massachusetts women's basketball team had just dropped a dogfight to Rhode Island 63-54 at the Mullins Center. UMass coach Marnie Dacko had already given her postgame talk to her team, most of the Minutewomen had already departed from the locker room and the Rams were already getting on their bus to return to the Ocean State.
Sophomore Pam Rosanio, however, had to remain in the locker room as the team trainer examined her face.
Throughout the afternoon's contest, Rosanio did not shy away from her opposition and in the process was shoved, elbowed and simply knocked around by various Rams. Penetrating into the paint, Rosanio put her body on the line and paid the price during UMass's 12th loss of the season.
"I got elbowed right in the same cheek three times," Rosanio said. "It was a physical game."
When Rosanio emerged from the team's locker room following the contest, gripping a softball-sized bag of ice against the right side of her face, she had just put out a gutsy performance - and had a black and blue shiner to show for it.
Along with the battle-wounds, Rosanio had also put up a team-high 24 points and grabbed nine rebounds, while keeping her squad neck-to-neck with the Rams the entire afternoon before faltering.
"Pam is tough as nails," Dacko said. "She's a gamer, she always brings her play to the game and to practice and is just maturing as a player."
On a team that has eight freshman and sophomores and only four juniors and seniors, Rosanio, along with the rest of the sophomores, has been forced into leadership roles during the early portion of her collegiate careers. Her fearless performance against URI was an example of her ability to step up to the level that Dacko expects her to be at.
"[Rosanio is] doing a great job," Dacko said. "She's always asked to play one of the best offensive contributors on our opponents."
Although a team's sophomores rarely are considered the leaders, Dacko has slated Rosanio and teammates as the go-to girls.
Less than one week after her physical bout against URI, Rosanio's efforts sprung the Minutewomen free from a six-game losing skid and gave her team its first Atlantic 10 win - and she did it in true Rosanio fashion.
Facing a Richmond squad which had double the number of wins that the Maroon and White had going into the contest, Rosanio put up 22 points. A few days later on Jan. 22, Rosanio came through again for UMass, but this time against then No. 25 George Washington.
Scoring a team-high 17 points and hitting two out of four three-pointers against GW, Rosanio led the Minutewomen to their first win over a ranked team since 1999.
Because of her performances against the Spiders and the Colonials, Rosanio was named the Dinn Brothers/UMass Co-Athlete of the Week aside men's basketball forward Jeff Viggiano on Jan. 24.
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