South Orange, N.J.-- UMBC women's basketball needed a late fourth quarter comeback, getting the go-ahead bucket from Janee'a Summers (Bound Brook, N.J.) in a 57-53 win against Kennesaw State on Sunday. The Retrievers are off to their best start since the 1985-86 season when they also started 4-0.
UMBC stays unbeaten at 4-0, while the Owls fall to 1-2 on the year.
The Retrievers and Owls took turns with the lead in the early part of the first quarter. UMBC took the lead back with a pair of triples from Te'yJah Oliver (Clinton, Md./Riverdale Baptist) and Janee'a Summers. Both teams struggled to find the basket late in the quarter with neither side hitting a field goal over the last 5:30 of the quarter, with UMBC taking a 12-8 lead after one.
Summers ended the nearly eight minute field goal drought with a corner jumper to extend the Retriever lead. The Retrievers held the Owls without a field goal over another three minute stretch (0-5 from the floor) to extend their lead to four.
Freshman Kayla Jackson (Rochester, N.Y.) stepped up off the bench, scoring four first half points with four rebounds to give UMBC a 23-20 lead at the break. The Retrievers saw eight different players score in the half, shooting 36 percent from the floor and 50 percent in the second quarter.
O'lesheya Braxton (Paterson, N.J.) came out swinging for the Retrievers scoring eight quick points over a 2:30 span to push the Retriever advantage to 31-26. However, the Owls would respond cutting the deficit to two, and taking the lead 39-37 after three.
The Retrievers mounted their comeback late in the fourth. Dominika Skrocka (Moscow, Russia) scored all nine of her points in the fourth to spark the comeback. Summers gave the Retrievers the lead back in the final minute with a layup off the out of bounds, 54-53. UMBC would make a defensive stand late to hold on for a 57-53 victory.
Summers and Oliver each ended up with 13 points. Oliver added five rebounds, including a big rebound late. Both Summers and Oliver were named to the All-Tournament Team. Skrocka added nine with Braxton chipping in eight.
UMBC returns to Baltimore for another road contest against Coppin State on Wednesday, Nov. 14. Tip-off is set for 11 a.m.