BEVERLY, Mass. – The Endicott women's basketball team hosted Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) opponent, Roger Williams on Saturday afternoon. Entering the matchup the two teams were neck and neck in the CCC standings. Despite the 20 point effort from junior Kayleen Whall (Foxboro, Mass.) it was not enough to beat the Hawks squad who had three players in double figures as they fell 59-69. With the loss the Blue and Green move to 15-6, (10-4 CCC) while the Hawks improve to 17-4, (12-2 CCC).
The first half was a battle as Roger Williams just outscored the Gulls 34-31. Endicott struggled to take control from long range shooting 25%, and in the field was a similar story only shooting 12-26 compared to the 15-26 for the Hawks. Both sides were fighting back and forth as they were neck and neck throughout the entire half. Whall was solid offensively for Endicott as she led the half with 12 points while sophomore Kelsey Cuddy (Madison, Conn.) was stealthy defensively causing four turnovers for the Hawks and tabbing the four steals on the plays.
At the halfway mark the Gulls led by a basket but after a tough turnover from senior Sarah Robinson (Norwich, Vt.) sophomore Angelica Ariola (Prosect, Conn.) was able to tie the game up at 16 points apiece. The bucket from Ariola fired up the Hawks as they followed with five more unanswered points to take a 21-16 lead.
Whall worked to boost her squad back up hitting seven consecutive points for the Gulls, but could not get too close to the Hawks as they answered all of her baskets to keep a five point lead with 4:29 remaining in the first half. Senior Samantha Crough (Cohasset, Mass.) followed Whall as she recorded back to back buckets to get within four. After the two minute mark Whall went perfect from the charity mark followed by an and-one play to get the Blue and Green within three points entering halftime.
The second half was similar to the first as the Hawks outscored Endicott 35-28, but the Gulls struggled from long range going 0-5 and only shooting 34.6% from the field compared to the 44.8% from Roger Williams. Crough crushed 10 points in the second half followed by eight from Whall and six from Cuddy.
Endicott came out in full force to start the half as they tied to game up at 36 apiece off a huge steal by Cuddy followed by a no look pass from junior Katelyn Wright (Sudbury, Mass.) to find Cuddy under the basket for the quick layup. At the 15 minute mark the Hawks worked to pull away with efforts from senior Kaitlyn Bovee (Berlin, Conn.) who nailed a trey to take a 44-39 lead.
Endicott worked to keep within reach as Crough and Whall pushed the squad offensively getting back within three with 9:07 remaining. After a few big plays by Bovee and Ariola, the Gulls were on fire lighting up the scoreboard with huge buckets from Whall, Crough and sophomore Nicole Catizone (Woburn, Mass.) to make it a two point game with just under five minutes to play.
After a quick timeout for the Blue and Green Roger Williams came out ready to take the game as they scored on almost every possession to take the 69-59 victory leaving the Gulls with the tough conference loss.
Endicott will pick back up on Wednesday when they travel to CCC opponent Nichols (11-10, 6-8 CCC) for a 7:30 pm tip-off. The last meeting between the two sides was back in January when the Gulls took the 66-50 victory on their home court at MacDonald Gymnasium.