McLaughlin grabs career-high 18 rebounds for double-double in LEC setback
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Junior Elizabeth McLaughlin (Melvin Village, N.H.) ripped down a career-high 18 rebounds and added 11 points, but the University of Southern Maine used a strong second half to topple Plymouth State University, 69-52, in a Little East Conference (LEC) women's basketball game at Foley Gymnasium on Wednesday night.
McLaughlin led the offense early and grabbed nine boards in the second quarter alone in her big game. After a back-and-forth game in the first quarter, USM took a five-point lead in the second to hold a 28-23 advantage at the half. The Huskies slowly added on over the final 20 minutes to earn the conference win.
Plymouth State falls to 3-10 overall and 0-6 in the LEC, while Southern Maine evens its record at 8-8 and moves to 3-4 in league action.
Plymouth State 52, Southern Maine 69
Plymouth State (3-10, 0-6 LEC)
Southern Maine (8-8, 3-4 LEC)
How it Happened.
- Senior Chenysse Hill's (Lynn, Mass.) runner as the shot clock was winding down gave PSU a 9-7 lead with four minutes left in the opening quarter.
- Freshman Alessia Salzillo (Saugus, Mass.) drilled a three from the left corner and McLaughlin got open under the basket on an in-bounds play as the Panthers' extended the margin to 14-8, but USM scored the next six points as the game went into the second quarter knotted at 14-14.
- Southern Maine used a 6-0 run, capped by a strong inside move from sophomore Victoria Harris (Altus, Okla.), as Huskies went up 20-14 two minutes into the second.
- Sophomore Michelle Rowe (Gorham, Maine) got ahead of the pack for back-to-back fastbreak layups as USM pushed the lead to 26-18.
- Freshman Autumn Nelson (Weare, N.H.) hit a free throw and layup with contact to trim the margin to 26-23, but junior Mary Tomas (Gardiner, Maine) grabbed an offensive rebound and just beat the buzzer to give the Huskies a 28-23 lead at the half.
- The visitors scored the first five points of the third quarter as the lead swelled to double digits, but McLaughlin answered with back-to-back buckets and freshman Bella Earle (South Hadley, Mass.) and Cook each hit as the Panthers clawed back to within two, 33-31, midway through the frame.
- Southern Maine came back with a 16-6 surge to lead 49-37 heading to the final quarter.
- Rowe's straight on three pushed the Huskies' advantage to 54-37 three minutes into the frame and PSU was unable to get closer than 15 the rest of the way.
Inside the Numbers:
- Hill led the Panthers with 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting and added four rebounds, three assist and three steals.
- McLaughlin posted her first double-double of the year after coming back from injury four games ago.
- Salzillo chipped in with six points and a team-high four steals.
- Rowe paced Southern Maine with a game-high 21 points on 9-of-13 shooting and added 11 boards, while Harris came off the bench for 14 points, five rebounds and five steals in 14 minutes.
- Both teams grabbed 45 rebounds.
Straight From the Coach's Mouth:
"They give 100% every game, so we can't complain about effort," said head coach Leah Swanson. "It's the little things ... we've just got to play four quarters."
- Both teams are back in conference action on Saturday (Jan. 18). The Panthers head to UMass Dartmouth for a 1:00 p.m. tip-off, while Southern Maine hosts Eastern Connecticut at the same time.
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