Women’s Basketball’s First-Half Run Knocks Off Hartford, 53-51

Women’s Basketball’s First-Half Run Knocks Off Hartford, 53-51

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BALTIMORE – UMBC women's basketball used a 17-2 first-half run and three double-digit scorers to take down Hartford, 53-51, in America East action on Sunday afternoon at the RAC Arena. Junior guard Capree Garner (Silver Spring, Md./Springbrook) finished with a game-high 16 points for the Retrievers.

The Retrievers registered the run during the final 8:38 of the first half, holding the Hawks to one field goal during spurt, en route to a six-point advantage at the break. UMBC held off a number of Hartford surges during the second period, but the Hawks were able to pull within two in the final 2:30 behind the efforts of sophomore guard Deanna Mayza. UMBC held on to the lead and made a big defensive stop in the final 10 seconds to hang on for the victory.

UMBC's junior guard Liz McNaughton (Fairfax, Va./Fairfax) registered nine of her 10 points during the Retrievers' run, while sophomore guard Taylor McCarley (Bowie, Md./Academy of Holy Cross) continued her double-digit scoring streak to seven games, chipping in 11 points, five assists and four rebounds.

Mayza paced the Hawks with 12 points, while sophomore guard Morgan Lumb chipped in 11 points, seven rebounds and four assists. The Retrievers pick up their first win in the last seven tries in the series versus the Hawks to improve to 10-17 overall and 5-9 in league play, while Hartford falls for the fourth straight game to drop to 13-15 overall and an even 7-7 in America East action.

The teams traded baskets throughout most of the first 10 minutes of the contest, but it was Hartford that knocked down five of its first seven shots from beyond the arc to jump out to its largest lead of the afternoon at nine points, 23-14, with 8:38 to go in the opening half, but the Retrievers' defense held the Hawks scoreless for 8:10 en route to a 17-0 run. UMBC hit one of its first eight three-point attempts, but McNaughton drilled three of UMBC's next four attempts from long range during the spurt to go into the half with a game-best nine points. The Retrievers shot 48 percent from the field in the first half and held a 14-6 advantage at points in the paint to guide UMBC to a 31-25 lead at the break.

The Retrievers extended their advantage to eight in the opening minute of the half, but back-to-back buckets from the Hawks pulled Hartford within four, 33-29, with 16:43 to go. UMBC's offense continued to produce, despite the Retrievers going cold from three-point land in the second half (1-of-12). UMBC worked the ball inside to extend to its largest lead of the afternoon at nine points, 45-36, with 9:28 to go behind a pair of baskets from McCarley.

Hartford used a final 6-2 push to cut its deficit to two, 48-46, with 2:30 to go behind the play of Mayza, who scored six of her 12 points during the final 4:00, but the Retrievers had a response for everything Hartford threw at them down the stretch, including a defensive stop with a two-point lead, 53-51, with 14 seconds to go.

The Retrievers held Hartford to 28.6 percent shooting in the second half, including 0-for-9 from beyond the arc. UMBC outscored the Hawks, 26-16, at points in the paint, while senior center Dana Lewis (Brodhead, Wis./Brodhead) and sophomore forward Pandora Wilson (Gaithersburg, Md./Academy of Holy Cross) combined for 11 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks on the afternoon.

Game Notes

-UMBC has picked up four of its six wins against the Hawks on its home court.
-The Retrievers improve to 10-0 on the season when leading with 10:00 to go.
-Junior guard Carpee Garner added to her double-digit scoring games, with 25 on the season.