The Boston University women’s basketball team will put its 11-game winning streak on the line Sunday afternoon when it travels to Durham, N.H. and attempts to complete the season sweep of the University of New Hampshire.
The Terriers (16-6, 10-0 America East) couldn’t be hotter coming into the matchup. They haven’t lost a game since Dec. 30, against St. John’s University, and haven’t lost to an America East team since the University of Hartford defeated them in last season’s America East Tournament championship game.
On Wednesday night against Stony Brook University, the Terriers exploded for their highest offensive output of the season and defeated the Seawolves, 89-71, at Case Gymnasium.
Senior co-captain Jesyka Burks-Wiley led all scorers with 28 points. Co-captain Christine Kinneary (15 points, 6 assists) and classmate Kristi Dini (11 points) also recorded double-digit scoring outputs.
The Terriers dominated the Seawolves in points in the paint (38-26), points off turnovers (30-5), and fastbreak points (14-0).’
Seven of those turnovers came courtesy of senior guard Amarachi Umez-Eronini, who finished the game with five points, seven assists and a career-high seven steals. Umez-Eronini leads the conference in steals per game with 2.8.’ ‘
In their last contest, the Wildcats (6-17, 4-5) toppled UMBC, 73-65, in Durham, N.H. They held the conference’s leading scorer, junior Carlee Cassidy (22.1 points per game), to 18 points.
Wildcat junior forward Candace Williams notched a double-double against the Retrievers with 18 points and 10 boards. Williams leads the conference in rebounding (8.0 rebounds per game) and ranks third in scoring (16.6 ppg) behind Cassidy and Burks-Wiley (18.5 ppg).
UNH shot 37.9 percent from the field and made the Retrievers pay from the foul line by shooting 75 percent from the charity stripe.
Junior sharp-shooter Amy Simpson ‘-‘- the team’s second-leading scorer ‘-‘- finished with 11 points, but went just 1-of-9 from her favorite spot ‘-‘- beyond the 3-point line.
In their last meeting on Jan. 17, the Terriers rolled over UNH, 79-6,2 at The Roof. Burks-Wiley racked up 24 points en route to surpassing 1,000 points for her career.
Umez-Eronini finished the game with a then-career-high six steals to go along with nine assists and eight points. Dini lit up the Wildcats for 12 points ‘-‘- all of which came via the 3-pointer (4-9).
After that game, Umez-Eronini talked about handling Williams.
‘Offensively, someone like Williams is deceiving,’ Umez-Eronini said. ‘She doesn’t look quick, but she is very quick. The main goal was to keep her in front, stay long on her and just force her to take a bad shot and not let her have the lane.
In that meeting, UNH caused problems for the Terriers on the offensive end by switching from a man-to-man defense into a zone scheme. The defensive strategy made the Terriers look timid on the offensive end, and they didn’t attempt a free throw until just over four minutes remaining in the first half.
BU coach Kelly Greenberg expressed her disappointment in that statistic in the postgame press conference, emphasizing that her Terriers (73.1 percent from the charity stripe on the season) need to get to the line since they lead the league in free-throw percentage.