BLACKSBURG, Va.—UMBC senior forward Erin Brown(Bethesda, Md./Walt Whitman) and junior guard Brittany Crowell (Brandywine, Md./Gwynn Park/James Madison) combined for 34 points on 10 three-pointers, but the UMBC women's basketball team (6-7) fell to Virginia Tech (4-9) by a score of 57-52 Thursday evening on the final day of the Hilton Garden Inn Hokie Classic at Cassell Coliseum.
Brown tied her career high with six 3-pointers in nine attempts and finished with 18 points, while Crowell set new career bests with 16 points and four triples in eight attempts, as UMBC matched a season high with 10 treys in the game, shooting 47.6 percent from beyond the arc.
Virginia Tech scored 10 straight points to open the game and led, 20-9, at the 12:15 mark. But a 3-pointer by Crowell sparked a 19-6 Retriever run that gave UMBC a 28-26 advantage with 2:58 remaining. After the Hokies scored five in a row to regain the lead, Brown tied it up with her fifth triple of the game with 49 seconds remaining, but Virginia Tech guard Monet Tellier was fouled with one second left in the half and made one of two free throws to give the Hokies a 32-31 advantage at the break.
After missing seven of their first nine shots, the Retrievers made nine of 13 to end the half and shot 50 percent (11-for-22) in the opening 20 minutes. Their final eight field goals of the period came from long distance, as Brown had five and Crowell three.
UMBC opened the second stanza with a 9-2 run and took a game-high six-point lead, 40-34, on a 3-pointer by Crowell at the 16:58 mark. But the Hokies responded with a 13-1 spurt that put them on top, 47-41, with 9:47 to play.
Crowell broke it up with a jumper in the paint, and Brown gave the Retrievers their final lead of the game, 50-49, with her sixth trey of the contest with 4:23 remaining.
But that proved to be UMBC's final field goal of the night, and a jumper by Virginia Tech forward Latorri Hines-Allen at the 2:33 mark put the hosts on top for good, as the Hokies, who had struggled from the line all game, managed six of 10 free throws down the stretch.
The Retrievers shot 37.3 percent from the floor in the game while holding Virginia Tech to just 31.0 percent, but while the Hokies shot just 50 percent from the charity stripe, their 16 free throws proved to be the difference in the game, as UMBC went to the line just six times.
Tellier led the Hokies with 18 points, while Larryqua Hall pulled down a game-high 11 caroms for the hosts, who outrebounded the Retrievers, 44-34. Virginia Tech scored 14 second-chance points off 18 offensive boards, and also capitalized on 15 UMBC turnovers for 14 points.
The Retrievers return to action on Monday, Jan. 2, when they open America East play against New Hampshire at 7 p.m. at the RAC.
Notes: Brown tied a Cassell Coliseum record with six 3-pointers in the game… She moved into third place all-time at UMBC with 153 career 3-pointers.