Panthers storm back but come up short in LEC contest
CASTLETON, Vt. – Plymouth State University mounted a wild fourth quarter rally to trim a 16 point deficit down to eight, but the Panthers were unable to complete the comeback bid as Castleton University held on for a 49-38 win in a Little East Conference (LEC) women's basketball game at Glenbrook Gymnasium on Thursday night.
The Panthers trailed by just two, 14-12, after the first quarter and both teams struggled to find their shot in the second as Castleton held a 22-17 lead at the half. The Spartans' defense clamped down in the third quarter, though, limiting PSU to just 1-of-14 shooting to take a 36-21 lead into the fourth quarter. Trailing by 14 with just two minutes to play Plymouth State attempted to rally, knocking down a pair of three-pointers to slice the lead to eight, but the hosts recovered to hold on for the win.
With the setback the Panthers fall to 3-8 and 0-4 in conference play, while Castleton snaps a six-game skid to improve to 7-6 and 2-2 in the LEC.
Plymouth State 38, Castleton 49
Plymouth State (3-8, 0-4 LEC)
Castleton (7-6, 2-2 LEC)
How it Happened.
- Freshman Jalen Cook (Monkton, Vt.) hit from beyond the arc and junior Elizabeth McLaughlin (Melvin Village, N.H.) completed an old-fashioned three-point play to give PSU an 8-4 lead after the first three minutes.
- Castleton went ahead, 10-8, but Cook's jumper evened the score at the six minute mark.
- Trailing 14-10 in the final seconds, senior Alex Ricard (Manchester, N.H.) got to the basket to cut the Panthers' deficit to 14-12 after the first.
- Both offenses struggled in the second quarter as the teams combined for 12 turnovers and shot 6-for-27 (22%) from the floor.
- The Spartans scored the first eight points of the frame to push the lead to double digits, 22-12, but freshman Bella Earle (South Hadley, Mass.) drained a three and senior Chenysse Hill (Lynn, Mass.) made it a 22-17 game at the half with her jumper.
- The Panthers' offensive woes carried into the third quarter, though, as freshman Alessia Salzillo's (Saugus, Mass.) three-pointer accounting for the only PSU points for the first 8:30 of the frame and Castleton took a 36-21 lead into the final stanza.
- The hosts still held a 14-point advantage, 45-31, with just under two minutes to play, but back-to-back triples from freshman Autumn Nelson (Weare, N.H.) and Salzillo gave the Panthers new life with 1:26 remaining.
- PSU was unable to get any closer, however, as the Spartans hit some clutch free throws to hold on for the win.
Inside the Numbers:
- Salzillo led the Panthers with 12 points on 4-of-8 shooting from downtown, while Nelson pulled down a team-best six rebounds to go with her five points.
- Cook made contributions throughout the box score totaling five points, four rebounds and four steals.
- Castleton got a game-high 18 points from senior Emilee Bose (Enosburg Falls, Vt.), while junior Brooke Raiche (Ira, Vt.) notched a double-double with ten points and ten rebounds.
- Though the Panthers shot just 27.7% from the field, they went 7-of-18 (38.9%) from distance and outscored Castleton by a 21-3 mark from beyond the arc.
- PSU welcomes Eastern Connecticut to Foley Gymnasium on Saturday (Jan. 11) for another league contest at 1:00 p.m.
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