Senior Stephanie Houtman
WILLIMANTIC, CT-Eastern Connecticut used a 24-4 second half run to pull away as they defeated the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's women's basketball team, 66-54, in the first game of a Little East Conference doubleheader at Geissler Gymnasium Saturday.
The Corsairs took an early 14-9 lead behind eight consecutive points by junior forward Colleen Moriarty (Canton, MA/Canton HS) and three-pointers from sophomore forward Erika Bornemann (Canton, MA/Canton HS) and freshman guard Kelsey Garrity(Somerville, MA/Somerville HS). The Warriors rallied back with a 10-0 run, fueled by eight points from freshman guard Kristina Forsman (Newington, CT/Newington HS), grabbing a 20-14 lead with 7:54 left in the first half. The teams battled back-and-forth over the final six minutes of the first half, forcing a 28-28 tie at the break.
Coming out of the locker room, the Corsairs pulled ahead with a 7-4 run, and a pair of free throws from Moriarty put UMD up 35-32 with 16:42 to play. Tied 35-35 with 15:09 on the clock, Eastern Connecticut took a commanding lead with a 24-4 run over the next nine minutes, powered by 11 points from Forsman and 10 points from freshman forward Shannon McCourt (New Fairfield, CT/New Fairfield HS). The Corsairs outscored the Warriors 13-7 in the final six minutes.
UMD was led offensively by Moriarty with a team-high 23 points and 14 rebounds. Senior guard Stephanie Houtman(New Bedford, MA/New Bedford HS/Bridgewater State) scored17 points, shooting 8-of-14 from the floor, with six rebounds and two assists. Bornemann and Garrity each added seven points in the loss, while Bornemann added 11 rebounds. Forsman led all scorers with a game-high 24 points, with four rebounds and two assists. McCourt chipped in 20 points along with a game-high 16 rebounds, while senior center Jaymie Sommers (Voluntown, CT/Griswold HS) also grabbed a game-high 16 rebounds with nine points. UMass Dartmouth shot 35.5% (22-of-62) from the floor, while Eastern Connecticut connected on 36.6% (26-of-71) of their attempts. The Warriors outrebounded the Corsairs, 50-42, during the contest.
"We failed in every phase of the game today," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Amanda Van Voorhis. "We didn't match their intensity. Eastern Connecticut was the better team and they deserve all the credit for the win. They did what they needed to do and we didn't do anything to stop them."
The Corsairs dropped to 14-9 and 5-7 in the Little East Conference with the loss, while the Warriors improved to 7-15 and 3-9 in LEC play with the defeat. UMass Dartmouth will return to action when they visit UMass Boston Tuesday evening.