KEENE, N.H. - Led by 16 points, eight rebounds, eight assists and five steals from senior forward Stephanie D'Annolfo in an almost triple-double, the Keene State women's basketball program used a 27-19 advantage on 8-for-15 (53.3%) shooting from the floor in the fourth quarter to push past Southern Maine, 68-63, in a Little East Conference (LEC) contest on Saturday afternoon at Spaulding Gymnasium.
- Keene State: 8-5, 2-1 LEC
- Southern Maine: 2-11, 1-2 LEC
"We were down on ourselves because we weren't hitting out shots. We called a timeout and we said, 'We need to score here and we need a stop.' We needed to have that mentality. Ultimately, our defense was what won the game for us. I think our defense gave them some problems and we played with a lot of energy in that." --Head Coach Keith Boucher
"I think that when my teammates see that everything is indeed okay, that they will believe it. We just needed that one person to be a spark of energy in the fourth quarter; we all have our different ways of doing it, but we needed that sense of leadership." -- Senior forward Stephanie D'Annolfo
How It Happened
Junior guard Sandi Purcell registered 19 points for the Owls, while senior forward Sarah Kober tied D'Annolfo with a game-high eight rebounds. Three Huskies posted points in double-figures, as Alexa Srolovitz tied Purcell for a game-high 19 points. Jackie Luckhardt added 16 points on 7-for-9 shooting from the floor and six rebounds, while Emily Nicholson followed with 15 points.
After a cold start for both teams, a jump shot from Kimberly Howrigan put Southern Maine in front, 10-7, with 5:25 on the clock, before a basket by D'Annolfo brought Keene State within one. Srolovitz quickly responded for the Huskies with a jumper with 4:49 remaining in the first, yet a three-pointer from Purcell tied it up at 12 apiece with 3:34 left. Neither team scored for the next two and a half minutes, before a steal by Sarah Kober led the way for Owls to take the lead, as D'Annolfo made a layup for the final tally of the first quarter.
Sophomore guard Emily McPadden opened scoring in the second quarter with a layup, as Keene State went on a 6-2 run to push their lead to six, capped off by a layup from junior guard Lydia Vital with 7:11 remaining, forcing the Huskies to a timeout. Back-to-back baskets by Chantell Eells brought Southern Maine within two, before six points from Luckhardt tied the game at 24 with 3:26 to play. Both teams traded points for the remainder of the quarter, but a jump shot from Srolovitz with 14 seconds left gave the Huskies the edge over the Owls, 33-31, going into the half.
Keene State would take back a one-point lead, 36-35, to begin the third off a layup by D'Annolfo and a trey from freshman forward Kenzie Bennett, before the Huskies scored seven consecutive points to earn the largest lead of the game with 2:40 left on the clock. A three-pointer from McPadden halted the run and brought the Owls back to within three at the end of the third, 44-41, Southern Maine.
The Huskies scored the opening six points of the quarter to extend their gap to nine points with 7:23 remaining, before a spark off a three-point basket from Purcell ignited the Keene State offense. A basket from Bennett and back-to-back three-pointers from Vital and Purcell lifted the Owls above the Huskies for the first time since the third quarter. Nicholson converted three free throws to make it a one-point game in favor of Southern Maine, 53-52, before a layup by sophomore forward Josie Amerson at 4:41 on the clock put Keene State in front for the remainder of the game, as the Owls erupted into a 11-0 run, earning a double-digit lead with 2:53 left. The Huskies would come as close as four points, but Keene State's four three-point baskets in the fourth quarter were enough to lift them to victory.
Inside the Paint
- There were eight ties and 12 lead changes throughout the game.
- Keene State finished 24-for-61 (39.3%) from the floor and 9-of-24 (37.5%) from the beyond the arc, while Southern Maine went 19-of-46 (41.3%) from the field.
- The Owls held a slight edge in rebounds over the Huskies, 39-31.
- Keene State will begin their three LEC road game series, when the Owls head first to Western Connecticut State on January 11th for a 5:30 p.m. tip-off.
- Southern Maine will host Rhode Island College on January 11th at 5:30 p.m.