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Harris’ 22 points Falls Short of a UMBC Comeback at Vermont, 63-60
Harris reset her career-highs in points (22), rebounds (8) and assists (8).
BURLINGTON, Vt. – UMBC senior guard Raven Harris (Virginia Beach, Va./Princess Anne/American) did all she could to bring the Retrievers back from an 11-point second half deficit, but was unable to get the game tying shot off in time as UMBC fell 63-60 to Vermont in Saturday afternoon’s America East contest at Patrick Gymnasium. Harris, the Retrievers’ America East Player of the Game, had a career-day, resetting career-bests in points (22), assists (eight) and rebounds (eight), while also adding five steals.
UMBC (5-12, 1-3 AE) falls for the second time in four days by less than five points, while Vermont moves to 2-1 in conference and 5-11 overall.
The black and gold all but eliminated an 11-point second half deficit as Harris scored 14 of her 22 points in the half. The Retrievers pulled within one with 3:20 to go and again with five seconds to go, both times following a trey from senior guard Brittany Crowell (Brandywine, Md./Gwynn Park/James Madison), but UMBC came up just shy, failing to get off the game tying three as time ran out.
UVM shot out to an 11-4 lead after going a perfect three-for-three from beyond the arc and connecting on four-of-six from the floor, while the Retrievers turned the ball over five times in the opening minutes. Vermont would lead by as many as nine in the first half, before Harris got UMBC going, scoring six of the Retrievers first 10 points and grabbing assists on UMBC’s other two baskets.
A Harris jumper with 8:23 to go in the first period started the Retrievers on a 12-5 run, including the final five points of the half from White, to tie the game at 27 heading into the break. Harris had five steals and four assists in the opening half and combined with White for 22 of the Retrievers’ 27 points.
UVM scored seven of the first nine points of the second half and went on to outscore the Retrievers 22-11 in the first 10 minutes of the second half to take a 49-38 lead. Harris fought UMBC back into the game with the help of Crowell who drained her fifth trey of the afternoon to pull the Retrievers within one, 54-53, with 3:20 to go.
The Catamounts scored six straight points to build its lead back up to 60-53, but UMBC responded with back-to-back layups, making it a three-point game with 23 seconds to go. The Retrievers put sophomore forward Niki Taylor on the line, who made one-of-two, allowing Crowell to pull UMBC back within one, 61-60, with five seconds to go. A pair of free throws from sophomore guard Tierra Shumpert with four seconds left sealed the victory for Vermont. Taylor, Vermont’s America East Player of the Game, scored a team-best 15 points and added seven rebounds, while Shumpert added nine points and six rebounds.
Crowell finished the contest with 17 points, while sophomore guard Bria White (Silver Spring, Md./Bethesda-Chevy Chase/Longwood) added 14 points and four rebounds. Senior center Kim Browning (Mechanicsville, Va./Hanover) chipped in a team-best nine rebounds, four points and three blocks.
UMBC concludes its three game road trip in Hartford on Wednesday, Jan. 16. Tip is set for noon at Chase Arena.
-Vermont snapped a four game losing streak to the Retrievers and holds a 12-8 advantage in the all-time series. UMBC moves to 0-8 on the road this season.
-Harris has scored in double-digits for a season-best four straight games and has a team-best 10 double-figure scoring games on the year. Her 22 points was her first 20-point performance of the season and the second of her career.