Freshman makes instant impact
Freshman guard and small forward Tabatha Richardson-Smith, of the women’s basketball team has quickly adjusted to being a Big East player as well as a student at Seton Hall.
Richardson-Smith helped her team win their third game of the season with a career high 19-point effort, including three 3-point baskets, off the bench against Siena. She also recorded six rebounds in the game.
Despite only being in her first year, she knew she would be contributing right away.
“The team needs shooting and I know I can score,” Richardson-Smith said, which was seen in the clutch late in the second half against Siena. This offensive performance was capped off with 7-0 individual run for Richardson-Smith.
Head coach Anne Donovan has labeled Richardson-Smith as one of the players she thinks can really step up to help the team; a team that Donovan said she thinks should be putting more points up on the board than they are currently producing.
Not only has she already fit right in on the hardwood, she has settled very comfortably into the Seton Hall community.
“Since I’m so far away, I’m from Texas, everybody invites you and you’re never pushed by yourself,” Richardson-Smith said. “When I first came here I had, like, 1,000 friends in the first couple of days.”
The self-proclaimed funny and outgoing freshman thinks that her ability to score and focus in a basketball game is something she could bring to the team this season and throughout her career at the Hall.
“I just need to work on coming out right away instead of waiting until the second half,” Richardson-Smith said. “I have to be ready to come out with that fire.”
Being a “big guard” also increases her physicality in games and ability to increase the Pirates’ offensive output.
Taking the advice of teammates and Donovan, Richardson-Smith has been trying to let the game come to her and simply be confident in what she can do.
When not in practice or games Richardson Smith still likes to stay with an athlete’s mindset by playing other sports, although now it is just recreational. Soccer, volleyball, swimming and track, had been a part of her life, have now taken a backseat. The obviously well rounded athlete did admit to not mastering one sport.
“Everything but softball, I just can’t play that,” Richardson-Smith said.
In just over 17 minutes of play per game on average, Richardson Smith is averaging 7.1 points along with 3.8 rebounds per game and is tied for second on the roster with four blocks on the season.
Richardson-Smith and the rest of the women’s basketball team will return to action Saturday against Wake Forest and will come back home to Walsh Gymnasium on Dec. 16 to face off against St. Mary’s.
Richardson-Smith made sure to add one message for the Seton Hall community: “Come watch us play,” Richardson-Smith said. “We will be bringing the W’s as the years come.”
Stephanie Vedral can be reached at Stephanie.Vedral@student.shu.edu.