Courtesy Hofstra Athletic Communications
The Hofstra women’s basketball team is preparing for its first round Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Tournament game against William & Mary this Thursday, an event that will have a particular special meaning to sophomore guard Nicole Capurso, who was forced to miss last year’s postseason with a torn meniscus.
Last year Hofstra also matched up against William & Mary in its opening CAA tourney game and Capurso could only watch from the bench as the Pride let a lead 10 point lead slip away in a 63-62 loss in which the Tribe scored the game’s final 11 points.
"It’s a do-over for our team so we’re going to take full advantage of that,” said Capurso of the Pride being matched against William & Mary for the second year in a row in the CAA Tournament first round. “We feel last year we didn’t give our best in the CAA Tournament and this year we can come back and do what we know we can do against William & Mary.”
Hofstra (18-12, 11-7 in the CAA) enters the postseason winners of eight of 10 but is coming off a 59-41 loss at Delaware that denied the Pride a chance of a first round bye and instead set them up as the number six seed. “This is just one more hurdle we have to jump,” said Capurso of the Pride having to win four games rather than three to obtain the program’s first trip to the NCAA Tournament.
After struggling early in the season Capurso turned her game around and finished second on the team in scoring with 9.7 points per game and converted 53 three-pointers. The highlight of her season came on Feb. 21 when she sank a game winning layup with two seconds left to cap a 21 point performance in a 68-67 win at Drexel. “If I’m playing well and I’m controlled and focused I think my shot just comes naturally,” she said.
Hofstra tips off against William & Mary in Thursday’s CAA Tournament first round game at James Madison University starting at 7:30 p.m. If the Pride advance past the Tribe it would face third seed Virginia Commonwealth in the quarterfinals on Friday at 7:30 p.m.