Saints lose fo­cus at end

Mis­cues down stretch irk coach, cost Siena against Jabir, Owls

Albany Times Union - Sunday - - COLLEGE BASKETBALL - By Mark Sin­ge­lais Al­bany

Siena women’s bas­ket­ball coach Ali Jaques and Florida At­lantic coun­ter­part Jim Jabir both said af­ter Satur­day’s game they have trou­ble get­ting their play­ers to lis­ten.

Only Jabir was smil­ing.

Jaques was fu­ri­ous fol­low­ing a 70-66 loss to Florida At­lantic and Jabir, her for­mer boss and ex-saints coach.

“I think we have a com­mu­ni­ca­tion prob­lem,” Jaques said. “I think our team has a hard time lis­ten­ing and ap­ply­ing, so we’re go­ing to be work­ing on that this week.”

Jaques was asked to ex­pand upon what the prob­lem is.

“Not know­ing what we’re do­ing when a play is called,” she said. “It’s my fault. I must not com­mu­ni­cate well enough. I need to be much more clear with what ex­actly I want. I’ve got a se­nior-laden team. We do have some fresh­men on the court in tough sit­u­a­tions, and they have to be able to lis­ten in time­outs and carry things over. I need to ad­dress it. I need to fix it.”

She was also up­set her team fouled in the fi­nal minute while trail­ing 68-66, which al­lowed the shot clock to re­set. The Saints

(3-5) ended up putting Dan­neal Ford at the free-throw line and she made both with 31 sec­onds left for the fi­nal mar­gin.

Ju­nior guard Sab­rina Piper led Siena with 16 points and had seven re­bounds. Ju­nior for­ward Mad­die Sims had eight points and seven re­bounds. She didn’t start be­cause of a dis­ci­pline is­sue.

The Owls (3-5) are in their sec­ond year un­der Jabir, who led Siena’s pro­gram from 1987 to 1990. He had suc­cess at Day­ton, where Jaques served as his as­sis­tant in 2005-06. Jabir led the Fly­ers to the Elite Eight at Times Union Cen­ter in 2015 be­fore re­sign­ing for health rea­sons a year later.

Florida At­lantic dressed in the same locker room that Day­ton did when it had a half­time lead over Uconn be­fore los­ing in the re­gional fi­nal.

Jabir started four fresh­men on Satur­day, in­clud­ing Juli­ette Gau­thier (18 points).

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