WESTFIELD, Mass. - Freshman guard Lilly Shlimon tallied 12 points and a game-high 14 rebounds in her collegiate debut, as the Keene State women's basketball team dropped a non-conference decision to Westfield State, 89-56, on Wednesday night in both Owls' season opener.
- Keene State: 0-1
- Westfield State: 1-0
How It Happened
Along with Shlimon's efforts, junior guard Emily McPadden registered a team-high 13 points with one assist and one rebound, while senior guard Sandi Purcell recorded 10 points and added three helpers with four rebounds.
Westfield State's Kierra McCarthy led all players with 25 points on 10-for-12 shooting and added seven rebounds, followed by Lucy Barrett with 16 points and four rebounds.
Keene State jumped out to a 5-0 lead with a basket beyond the arc from McPadden, followed up by a layup from sophomore forward Kenzie Bennett. Westfield State responded quickly with a three-pointer from Barrett and a layup from Janaiya Sanchez to even the score at five apiece. The WSU Owls extended their lead to 11-5 with 6:13 remaining in the first quarter, before sophomore guard Jasmin Mitchell answered back with five straight points for the KSC Owls to come within one. A converted free throw by Courtney McCurry pushed the score to 12-10 in favor of the home side, but a three-pointer by Purcell gave Keene State a one-point lead, 13-12, at the 5:16 mark. Westfield State grabbed a 17-13 lead with 2:53 remaining in the first stanza, but three converted free throws from Purcell and a layup by Bennett gave the KSC Owls a one-point edge, before the WSU Owls finished off the half with a three-pointer to push the score to 20-18, WSU.
Westfield State opened up the second quarter with nine unanswered points to earn a double-digit lead, 29-18, at the 7:27 mark, before Shlimon halted the run with a layup, but the WSU Owls maintained their lead to close out the second quarter, as two teams went into the break with a 44-33 score in favor of Westfield State.
The WSU Owls continued to extend their lead in the third quarter, after forcing the KSC Owls to commit multiple turnovers, earning their biggest advantage in the final minute of the stanza, before each team scored 15 points in the final quarter for a final score of 89-46, Westfield State.
Inside the Box
- Keene State held a 65-58 advantage in rebounds over Westfield State.
- This is the first season opener loss for the KSC Owls since the 2014 season, as Keene State defeated Westfield State in last year's opener.
- Freshman Abby Thut led the KSC Owls with three steals, followed by two steals from apiece from Bennett, Mitchell, Shlimon and Purcell.
- Keene State returns to Spaulding Gymnasium to host the Keene State Tip-Off Tournament on Friday and Saturday. The Owls will play their home opener on Friday, November 17th against Framingham State with tip-off at 4:00 p.m.
- Westfield State travels to the Eastern Connecticut State Tip-Off Tournament and will take on SUNY New Paltz at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday.