GORHAM, Maine – Sophomore Chantel Eells (Turner, Maine/Leavitt) notched her fourth consecutive double-double with 14 points, 12 rebounds, a career-high five blocked shots, and three assists to lead the University of Southern Maine Huskies over the Colby College Mules Tuesday night in a non-conference women’s basketball game at Fifield Court.
The win is the second straight for the Huskies, finishing the month of January 6-2, for an overall record of 11-9. Colby drops to 8-11 with the loss.
Eells was one of two USM players in double-figures during a game in which offense was at a premium. Senior forward Miranda Nicely (Farmington, Maine/Mt. Blue) came off the bench for 11 points, six rebounds and three assists, while freshman Kristen Curley (Gorham, Maine) filled the stat sheet with nine points, four rebounds, four assists, three steals and two blocked shots. Juniors Kimberly Howrigan (Fairfield, Vt./Bellows Free Academy) and Alexa Srolovitz (Montreal, Quebec/New Hampton School (NH)) scored seven and five points respectively.
Senior Haley Driscoll (Beford, N.H.) led the Mules with 13 points and five rebounds, while junior Katie McCrum (Saco, Maine/Thornton Academy) had 11 points, four rebounds and two assists. Sophomore Paige Russell (Alexandria, Va./Bishop Ireton) had eight points and a team-high 12 rebounds.
Headed into the second half with a nine-point, 32-23, lead, Southern Maine found itself in a tie ball game with the Mules, 38-38, after the third quarter. The Mules opened the quarter on an 8-2 run to whittle their deficit to 34-31 with 6:07 to play. Driscoll scored five of Colby’s points to open the third and went on to score seven in the quarter as the Mules outscored the Huskies 15-6 in the quarter.
Driscoll continued with the hot hand and scored the first basket of the fourth to give the Mules their first lead of the game since the first early in the second, 40-38, with 8:49 to play. USM’s Srolovitz answered right back for the Huskies however with a pivotal three-pointer on an assist from Curley as USM reclaimed the lead, and held it for the remainder. Srolovitz’s three started a key 7-0 run that gave USM a 45-40 lead with 5:14 to play.
Colby bounced back with four unanswered points to make it a one-point game, 45-44 on back-to-back layups from freshman Kara Petronio (Needham, Mass.) with 2:49 on the clock. The score remained unchanged over the next two minutes, before Eells was fouled on an interior move, and sunk two huge free throws with 47 seconds to play. Both teams squandered possessions, before Srolovitz sank one-of-two free throws in the closing seconds for the 48-44 final.
Southern Maine host UMass Dartmouth on Saturday (1:00 p.m.) in a return to Little East Conference action. The Huskies will celebrate its two seniors Emily Nicholson (Quispamsis, New Brunswick/Kennebecasis) and Miranda Nicely (Farmington, Maine/Mt. Blue) prior to the start of the game. Additionally, USM will recognize the senior members of the Corsairs.