Feb. 2, 2013
BOSTON – Trailing 40-38 with 1:37 remaining, senior Chantell Alford converted a three-point play and added another free throw with four seconds to go to give the Boston University women’s basketball team a hard-fought 42-40 victory over Hartford Saturday afternoon at Case Gym.
With the win, BU improves to 18-4 on the season and 8-1 in conference play while Hartford drops to 14-8 overall and 5-4 in the America East. The victory gives the Terriers their second-straight season sweep of the Hawks and allows BU to close out the conference rivalry having won the last four games in the series.
Alford scored BU’s final eight points of the game to finish with a team-high 12 points while junior Rashidat Agboola nearly had a double-double with 10 rebounds and nine points. Senior Mo Moran finished with seven points while juniors Whitney Turner and Danielle Callahan each added six points.
Nikkia Smith led Hartford with 12 points while Ruthanne Doherty was second on the team with 11. Smith was also Hartford’s leading rebounder with six boards.
Hartford ended the game with a 34.1 field goal percentage (15-of-44) while BU shot 32.0 percent (16-of-50). Both teams struggled from beyond the arc, as the Terriers went 1-of-9 and the Hawks were 1-of-12 from the 3-point line. Hartford ended with a 35-31 rebounding advantage while the teams combined for 35 turnovers.
The first 10 points of the game were evenly traded between the teams before the Hawks used an 8-0 run to gain separation from the Terriers. BU went over eight minutes without a field goal until Moran sank the Terriers’ only 3-pointer of the game with 5:55 remaining in the opening period to cut Hartford’s lead to 18-15.
Callahan followed with a pair of free throws to cut the Hawk’s lead to one but Doherty hit a jumper to make it 20-17 with 4:56 left in the half. Agboola scored the final field goal of the half with 31 seconds to go but Daphne Elliott hit a pair of free throws with three seconds left on the clock to send BU into the break trailing, 22-19.
The Terriers opened the second period with an 8-0 run to take a 27-22 lead off a jumper from Agboola with 15:40 on the clock. After a pair of free throws for the Hawks, Hartford scored its first field goal of the second half off the hands of Doherty with 12:48 remaining. The basket started an 11-2 run for Hartford capped by a 3-pointer from Alyssa Englert to give the Hawks a 35-33 lead with 7:55 to play.
Agboola hit the backend of a pair of free throws to make it a one-point game with 4:10 to go but Smith’s jumper following the final media timeout made it 37-34 Hawks with 3:47 to play. Alford responded on BU’s next possession to cut the lead to one but Doherty hit 1-of-2 free throws and Smith sank a jumper with just under two minutes to play to put the Hawks on top, 40-36.
Alford kept BU close with a jumper before the Terriers called timeout. Hartford committed a turnover right out of the break and Alford drove to the basket to tie the game at 40-40 while drawing the foul. The guard sank her shot from the charity stripe to give BU a one-point lead with 1:07 to play.
Both teams committed turnovers on as the clock ticked down and Hartford was forced to foul with four seconds left on the clock. Alford was sent to the line and hit the front end of a 1-and-1 but Turner came up with the offensive rebound to seal the 42-40 victory for BU.
The Terriers remain at home for their next game and host Stony Brook on Wednesday (Feb. 6). Tip-off between the Terriers and the Seawolves is set for 7 p.m. in Case Gym.