Smithfield, R.I. (December 31, 2017) – The Mount St. Mary's University women's basketball team posted a 68-63 victory over Bryant in a New Years Eve matchup on Sunday at the Chace Athletic Center. With the win, the Mountaineers moved to 2-0 to start Northeast Conference play, marking the team's best league start since the 2011-12 season.
Katrice Dickson netted a team-high 17 points on 5-of-9 shooting from the field and a 6-for-7 mark from the line. Juliette Lawless contributed 13 points on a perfect 3-for-3 day from the floor, while also picking up four rebounds and four assists. Caroline Hummell was the other Mountaineer in double-figures, registering 11 points, six rebounds and a pair of blocks.
Bryant's Sydney Holloway led all scorers in the contest with 21 points on 7-of-18 shooting, to go along with 14 rebounds as she collected the double-double. Brooke Bjelko joined Holloway with a double-double, posting 12 points and 14 rebounds.
The Mountaineers opened the second half of play with a one point lead, and were able to maintain their advantage through the third quarter. Dickson led the way with seven points in the third, as the Mount headed into the final period with a 54-53 lead.
Mount St. Mary's opened a four-point advantage on a layup from Rebecca Lee at the 6:56 mark of the fourth, before both teams went cold from the field. Neither team got on the board in the next three-plus minutes until Dickson broke the stretch by hitting 1-of-2 from the line to put the Mount up by five, 63-58.
A pair of Bryant free throws trimmed it to a three point game, but Dickson countered with two foul shots of her own to extend the lead back to 65-60. On the other end, the Mountaineers forced a Bryant missed and Lawless came down with the tough rebound before getting fouled. The junior made 1-of-2 from the line, but the Bulldogs came down on the other end and also sank 1-of-2 free throws to bring the deficit back to five. On the next possession, Lawless was fouled once again, but this time sank both foul shots to pad the Mountaineer lead to 68-61 with just 26 seconds remaining. The Bulldogs answered with a pair of foul shots from Bjelko with 10 seconds left, but weren't able to force a turnover on the next possession, as Mount St. Mary's dribbled out the clock for the 68-63 victory.
Mount St. Mary's (5-8, 2-0 NEC) connected on 47.1 percent of its shots and 38.9 percent from long range in the contest. Bryant shot 35.6 percent from the field and went just 1-of-14 from three-point range. The Bulldogs held a 41-30 advantage over the Mount on the glass.
The two teams entered the second quarter deadlocked at 12-12, and the game remained tight through the early stages of the period before Bryant went on a 7-0 run midway through the frame. The stretch put the Bulldogs up by a 24-16 margin, but the Mount answered with five straight on a three-pointer from Kayla Agentowicz and pull-up jumper from Jatarrikah Settle to trim the deficit back to three.
The Bulldogs (1-12, 0-2 NEC) built their lead back up to seven once again with just 1:46 remaining in the half, but a 10-2 run from the Mountaineers to close out the period gave them their first lead since late in the first quarter. Daly Sullivan's three from the wing gave the Mount the advantage with 45 seconds showing on the clock, and Lawless followed with a fast break layup to put the Mount up by three. Bryant's Stephanie Lesko converted in the lane on the other end to cut the Mount lead back to one, 35-34, before the halftime break.
Mount St. Mary's shot 46.7 percent from the floor as a team in the opening half, and held Bryant to a 37.9 percent mark and 0-for-6 shooting from three-point range. Lawless and Hummell paced the Mountaineers with 17 points combined in the half.
The Mount returns to action on January 6 for the team's NEC home opener against Sacred Heart at 1 p.m.