Retrievers Battle, Fall to Hartford 65-54 on Monday

Photo: Larry Levanti
Photo: Larry Levanti

West Hartford, Conn.—UMBC women's basketball suffered a 65-54 defeat at the hands of Hartford on Monday afternoon. Sophomore Allison McGrath (South Park, Pa./South Park) led the charge with a season high 13 points, scoring ten in the fourth quarter. UMBC would cut the deficit to as little as eight, but a 14-0 run in the fourth kept the Hawks in front.

UMBC falls to 2-16, 1-4 AE while Hartford improves to 12-6, 4-1 AE.

McGrath led the charge with 13 points as three Retrievers reached double figures. McGrath went 4-6 from the field, including 3-5 from three. Lucrezia Costa (Rome, Italy) and Brittani Burgess (White Plains, Md./St. Mary's Ryken/VCU) had 12 and 11 respectively.

Janelle Harrison led Hartford with 23 points, grabbing eight rebounds. Lindsey Abed added 22 for the Hawks.

Hartford raced out to an early lead, thanks to a 10-0 run to open the game. That would extend to a 13-1 spurt before Kristen Teklits (New Fairfield, Conn./New Fairfield) ended the run with a three from the wing. The Hawks would take a 20-6 lead after one after shooting 50 percent from the floor, forcing five UMBC turnovers.

Sophomore Te'yJah Oliver (Clinton, Md./Riverdale Baptist) jumpstarted the Retriever offense in the second, getting a beautiful backdoor feed from Costa to force a Hartford timeout. From there the Hawks would go on a run and open up a 17-point lead before Allison McGrath quelled the run with a three in transition. However, Hartford would take a 40-21 lead into the break after leading by as many as 21 in the opening 20 minutes.

Brittani Burgess led the Retrievers in the first half, scoring five points and adding three rebounds and two assists. Oliver, Teklits, McGrath and Lakiah Sims (Riverdale, Ga./Charles Drew/Palm Beach State) each had three points in the first half. The Hawks shot 53.8 percent from the floor in the first half, holding UMBC to 29.2 percent shooting.

UMBC came out of the locker rooms on a tear, holding the Hawks to just six points in the third, forcing five turnovers. The Retrievers used an 8-0 run early to cut the Hartford lead to 13 thanks to a Burgess fast break layup.

Laura Castaldo (West Nyack, N.Y./Clarkstown South) drilled a three to get the lead to ten as part of a 7-0 run to end the quarter. UMBC would trail by only eight heading into the fourth.

The Hawks would regain control thanks to a 14-0 run to start the fourth. UMBC would continue to fight, pulling to within 11 thanks to a big quarter from McGrath, who scored ten points in the fourth. However, the Hawks would come away with a 65-54 victory on Monday.

UMBC will have the week off before hosting defending conference champion Albany on Sunday, Jan. 21. Tip-off with the Great Danes is set for 1 p.m. on ESPN 3.