KEENE, N.H. - Behind a dominant performance in the paint, the Keene State women's basketball program returned to Spaulding Gymnasium in winning style, as the Owls defeated non-conference opponent Bates, 61-45, on Tuesday afternoon.
- Keene State: 7-5, 1-1 LEC
- Bates: 3-8, 0-0 NESCAC
- "It starts on the defensive end. If you play defense every possesion, you give yourself an opportunity to win. I thought team-wise, we did better in the second half. We are pretty tough to defend if we get some stuff in the paint; Amanda's performance helped us a great deal. As for energy, everybody feeds off energy people, Lydia and Steph; they're two good ones." -- Head Coach Keith Boucher
- "I've always had that drive to get rebounds and finish my layups. I've always just tried my hardest. I'm really excited to get some good [conference] competition in because I really like challenges and our team does as well." -- Senior forward Amanda Petrow
How It Happened
Petrow earned her second double-double in three games, as the senior forward scored 14 points, shooting 6-for-9 from the field, and pulled down 13 rebounds. Leading with fast-paced energy, junior guard Lydia Vital chipped in 11 points, while senior forward Stephanie D'Annolfo picked up 11 rebounds for the second-straight game and added a team-high performance of four assists and four steals.
For the Bobcats, Allie Coppola tallied 10 points and eight rebounds, followed by Bernadette Connors with nine points and eight rebounds.
The Bobcats jumped out to a 5-0 lead, before a basket by Petrow got the Owls on the board with 6:10 on the clock. Keene State earned a one-point lead off a trey from Vital with 3:10 left, before Bates knocked down the next five points off of a three-pointer from Carly Christofi and a basket from Coppola. The Owls responded with five points of their own with a basket beyond the arc from freshman guard Hien Thach and a layup from senior forward Sarah Kober, both set-up by D'Annolfo, to earn the lead, 12-11, Keene State. With 29 seconds remaining in the first, Coppola switched the lead again in favor of the Bobcats with a trey, but Vital made the final basket of the quarter to even the score at 14 apiece at the end of the first.
The Owls used a 9-3 run to begin the second half, ignitied by a three-pointer from sophomore guard Emily McPadden, to pull away from the Bobcats for the remainder of the game. The run was capped off by a layup from McPadden to lead Keene State to its largest gap of the game on top 23-17. A layup from Coppala would bring the Bobcats within four with 3:58 remaining, but the Owls gained a 11-point lead off a three-point play from Petrow less than 30 seconds until haltime. Nina Davenport scored the final points of the half with a basket from beyond the arc, as the two teams separated at the half, 30-22, Keene State.
Bates would come as close as seven in the third quarter with 6:02 on the clock, but the Owls responded by widening their lead to 13-points off a three-pointer from McPadden. Keene State stayed on top going into the fourth quarter beginning with an 8-0 run, as the Owls took their largest lead of 18 points with 3:47 remaining before finishing with a 61-45 victory.
Inside the Paint
- Keene State was impressive in the paint, as the Owls scored half of their points (32) in the lane.
- Keene State forced Bates into 22 turnovers, as the Owls came away with a season-high 13 steals to the Bobcats' four.
- Keene State shot 35.3% from the field, as Bates finished 28.0% from the floor.
- The Owls held Davenport, the Bobcats leading-scorer who came in averaging 15.5 points per game, to just seven points with one made basket beyond the arc.
- Petrow was just shy of her career-high in points (17) and rebounds (16).
- Keene State will host Southern Maine in a conference battle on Saturday, January 7th at 1:00 p.m.
- Bates opens conference play against Colby on Friday, January 6th at 7:00 p.m.