W. BASKETBALL

Moriah Hodge Finds Success in First Season at UT

Moriah Hodge is a junior forward on the University of Tampa women’s basketball team. This is Hodge’s first year at Tampa as she previously played basketball at Indiana State University for two years.

Hodge is happy she made the move, stating that “I needed a change in environment, and wanted to be a part of a winning program.”

Hodge grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio, with four siblings whom all played sports. She believes this is why she got into sports. When she was younger, Hodge played volleyball, softball, soccer and basketball. She started playing basketball in second grade but has stuck with it ever since.

Hodge played high school basketball at Glen Este High School where she was coached by Jeff Click. Hodge played on the varsity basketball team all four years in high school. Three out of those four years, she received first-team all-league honors. She also earned a spot on the all-Southwest Ohio team. One year, she led the team to a school record 20 wins.

After high school, Hodge went on to play basketball for the Indiana State University Sycamores. Her freshman year she played in 31 games and averaged 14.1 minutes per game, 2.3 rebounds per game and 2.7 points per game.

Her sophomore year she played in 24 games and started seven at basketball great Larry Bird’s alma mater. She averaged 10.6 minutes per game, 2.1 rebounds per game, and 1.3 points per game.

After her sophomore year at Indiana State, Hodge decided to transfer to the University of Tampa. Towards the end of her first year at Tampa, her numbers have considerably improved. She has started in all 26 games and is averaging 32.5 minutes per game, 6.3 rebounds per game and 11.2 points per game.

Hodge feels her mom had a lot to do with her success in basketball. “My mom always supported me with basketball,” recalls Hodge. “She would always take me to practice and I remember her always being involved.”

When Hodge was younger, she played on her step-dad Jack’s basketball team. She was in fourth grade and played for his ninth grade team. Jack taught her how to look for the ball while she is on the court. “He would always tell me to keep my head up,” said Hodge. “If we were doing a drill and I didn’t have my head up, then he would throw the ball at me and it would hit me because I wasn’t looking. I quickly learned to keep my head and hands up and always look for the ball.”

The goal for Hodge and the University of Tampa women’s basketball team is to continue to improve as a team despite a season riddled with injuries to its top players. They want to prove themselves and make a run in the conference tournament.

Written by Lenny Weg

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