The Boston University women’s basketball team snapped a three-game losing streak Sunday afternoon, coming away with a 70-60 win over Loyola University-Maryland at Reitz Arena in Baltimore.
“We talked a lot about our energy level at the start of games and how it needs to be better,” said BU associate head coach Michael Leflar. “I think we came out really focused and locked in the pre-game, and I think that carries over to starting really well on the court.”
The Terriers (7-12, 2-5 Patriot League) led from the get-go, and extended their lead to as much as 14 points twice in the first half. BU started out the game on an 18-6 run, capped off by a 3-pointer from sophomore guard Clodagh Scannell, and never looked back.
Good ball movement from senior guard Danielle Callahan led the Terriers to spread the ball across the floor, hitting shots both inside the paint and out.
Loyola (4-13, 1-5 Patriot League) would battle back, though, cutting the Terrier lead to just six points by halftime, 28-22.
The Greyhounds continued this surge into the second half, quickly scoring twice in the first minute of the second half, thanks to baskets from center Tiffany Padgett and guard Nai Brown, to bring the score to 28-26. Brown was a thorn in the side of the Terriers all game long, as she put in a game-high 28 points.
BU responded with an 8-0 run, getting major contributions from Callahan and senior forward Rashidat Agboola who both hit field goals during the run, swelling their lead to 10 points. The Greyhounds continued to hang in the game, and after a 3-pointer from Nicole Krusen, the BU advantage was shortened to just six points with 7:43 left in the contest.
The Terriers did not let up, however, pushing their lead back to 13 with 2:14 left to go in the game after two free-throw makes from Callahan.
The Greyhounds made one last push, going on 7-0 run, and cut the lead to six points with just under a minute to go.
Free throws became crucial in the final minute, as the Terriers went 4-for-4 from the charity stripe to seal a 70-60 win. Scannell and freshman guard Courtney Latham each hit a pair of shots from the charity stripe, which sealed the deal for the Terriers.
Scannell was not only important down the stretch, but an offensive force for the Terriers all game long, as she poured in 17 points, including five 3-pointers in her first-ever start.
“[Scannell] just did a great job of continuing to do what she has been doing well,” Leflar said. “She’s always, this year, really been our energy player, coming off the bench, she honestly has the nice ability to knock down outside shots. She’s really excelled in the starting role.”
Agboola also contributed to the offense, scoring 13 points, while grabbing 13 rebounds, registering her second double-double of the season.
Senior forward Whitney Turner helped on the inside as well, as she registered 10 points and pulled down five rebounds, rounding out the four Terriers who scored in double-digits.
“[The seniors] played great, they played great,” Leflar said. “Rashidat and Danielle both played a lot of minutes, I think Danielle played 38 and Rashidat 39, were very consistent throughout the game. And Whitney responded really well coming off the bench, played with real energy, was a real threat from down there, on both ends of the floor, and obviously had a very good day rebounding for us, she and Rashidat.”
The Terriers shot just 36.8 percent from the field, converting just 21 of their 57 attempts. They also only made only 18 of their 27 free throws, shooting 67 percent from the line. BU dominated on the boards, however, grabbing 14 more rebounds than the Greyhounds, which ultimately proved to be the difference maker in the game.
“Our emphasis going into the game was definitely our energy level,” Leflar said. “It needed to be high and it was. And we also emphasized rebounding, we’ve been getting outrebounded the past couple games, and there was certainly an emphasis on in practice. We talked about it preparing for Loyola, and the players did a great job on focusing on that a little bit more, and getting the job done. Hopefully we can continue to get the job done.”