Panthers post first LEC win of season
WILLIMANTIC, Conn. – The Plymouth State University women's basketball team avenged a 15-point loss to Eastern Connecticut State University a month ago by surviving the Warriors' rally and posting a 55-53 Little East Conference victory Saturday afternoon at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium.
With Eastern leading by one with 34 seconds left, PSU freshman Tiffany Lewis won the game by sinking her third three-point field goal (3-for-3) for the final and winning points of the game. The victory is PSU's third in a row and the first conference win for Plymouth State (5-15, 1-9 Little East) this season. It also snaps an 18-game losing streak at the hands of Eastern (6-15, 2-8 Little East), which lost its eighth straight.
There were nine ties and eight lead changes Saturday but PSU was able to hold off the Warriors' second-half rally. Trailing by 13 eight minutes into the second half, Eastern took its first lead (48-47) of the second half with 4:26 left following a 17-3 run.
After Lewis' go-ahead bucket, Eastern called timeout with 28.2 seconds left but freshman guard Danyelle Rodriguez' three-point field goal attempt with 14 seconds left rimmed the basket and popped out and PSU junior Kellie Walsh grabbed the rebound.
Walsh led PSU with 17 points, five steals and four rebounds, while Lewis added 15 points and seven rebounds. Fourteen of Lewis' points came in the second half, when she fired in all three of her three-pointers and was 5-for-7 from the floor overall.
Eastern senior center Jaymie Sommers led all players with 17 points and 19 rebounds, with McCourt adding 14 points and 14 rebounds – her 10th double-double of the year. McBride handed out seven assists and grabbed a season-high eight rebounds.
In a 15-point loss to Eastern Jan. 7, Plymouth State missed 18 of 20 three-point field goals. Saturday, the Panthers were 7-for-21 from long range while , Eastern failed on 11 of 12 from behind the arc. In all, the Warriors shot just 29.2 percent from the field.
Both teams play their in-state rivals on Tuesday as Eastern visits Western Connecticut and PSU returns home to host Keene State.
(Courtesy of Eastern Connecticut Sports Information)
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