BEVERLY, Mass. – A late rally by the Endicott women's basketball team fell just short in a 65-57 loss to the University of New England in a battle of Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) foes Tuesday night inside MacDonald Gymnasium.
With the defeat, Endicott dropped to 9-7 overall and 7-2 in the CCC, while University of New England surged to 12-3 overall and 9-0 in conference play.
A back-and-forth first quarter with five lead changes ended with the Gulls holding a 15-14 edge on sophomore guard Gabriella Coppola's (Watertown, Mass.) layup 16 seconds before the buzzer.
The second quarter saw Endicott manage a 19-18 lead with 5:21 to play before giving way to UNE as the Nor'easters took the reins at the 3:52 mark on sophomore forward Olivia Shaw's (Saco, Maine) free throw (22-21) and never looked back the rest of the way, up 28-23 at the half.
The Nor'easters continued to build their lead in the third quarter, with a 12-point cushion thanks to senior guard Sadie DiPierro's (South Portland, Maine) trey at the 57-second mark to give the visitors a 46-34 advantage.
The Gulls staged a rally in the fourth quarter, pulling the score to as close as 61-57 on Cuddy's back-to-back three pointers with 52 seconds remaining in regulation, but free throws down the stretch closed the door.
Senior guard Kelsey Cuddy (Madison, Conn.) carried the Gulls with a game-high 20 points on 8-of-15 FG, 2-5 3 PT, 2-2 FT and grabbed five rebounds to go with three assists, two blocks and four steals.
BEYOND THE BOX
- The Gulls attempted a season-low four free throws (made three), while UNE converted 15-of-22 from the stripe.
- The game featured two ties and six lead changes.
- Endicott scored just eight points in the second quarter.
- The Gulls placed two in double-digits as junior forward Sarah Hood (Burlington, Mass.) added 10 points and five boards to join Cuddy.
FOR THE FOES
- Shaw poured in 18 points along with a game-high nine rebounds, one block and two steals.
- Junior center Alicia Brown (Greenland, N.H.) added 16 points, four rebounds, one block and two steals.
- UNE forced 17 Endicott turnovers and turned those into 10 points.
- Endicott is 12-22 all-time and 7-9 at home versus the Nor'easters dating back prior to the 2002 season.
- The Gulls won the most recent meeting before today, 60-58, at home on Jan. 29, 2015 to snap a six-game skid in head-to-head matchups.
Both teams are back in action on Saturday, January 23 at 1:00 p.m. as the Gulls (9-7, 7-2 CCC) go on the road to face Eastern Nazarene College and University of New England (12-3, 9-0 CCC) hosts Western New England University.