CANCUN, MEXICO – The University at Buffalo women's basketball team overcame a two-point deficit and ended the game on a 22-10 run over the final nine and a half minutes as the Bulls defeated William & Mary, 66-56, on Saturday afternoon. The win evens up UB's record at 3-3 on the season.
The Tribe led early at 5-4, but the Bulls tried to pull away in the opening half using a 14-6 run to take a seven point lead in the half at 18-11. It was UB's largest lead of the half as the Tribe cut it to two on three occasions in the opening half, including the final bucket of the half as the Bulls led 31-29 at the break.
The Bulls opened the second half on a 9-0 run as they received four points from senior Kourtney Brown, while the run was capped off on a three from Brittany Hedderson. However a 17-4 run by William & Mary gave it a two-point lead at 46-44 with 9:49 left in the half. Six straight points from Brown pulled the Bulls ahead for good, although the Tribe would cut it to one with 4:36 left. UB responded with a game-changing 11-0 run which had five free throws from Jessica Fortman and a nifty three-point play from Hedderson, who cut to the basket and received a pass from Ashley Zuber. The Tribe did hit a three to pull within nine, but two free throws from Zuber finished the deal.
"I am extremely pleased with the way we played after the quick turnaround from yesterday," said head coach Linda Hill-MacDonald. "We got contributions from everybody this weekend and that is very important when you are playing in this heat and these conditions. We were able to overcome a couple of runs by William & Mary and not panic and that speaks to the maturation of this team."
Brown led the way with 25 points, nine rebounds, three blocks and a steal. Hedderson had 14 points, seven rebounds, five assists, a block and three steals as she was named to the All-Tournament Team. Fortman had six points, all from the free throw line, while also recording a game-high 10 rebounds. Fortman also had two assists, two blocks and two steals. Sophomore Nicki Hopkins had six points as she hit two big three pointers in the first half. Zuber had five points and three assists, while senior Bridgette Kendricks and freshmen Margeaux Gupilan and Kristen Sharkey each finished with three points. Kendricks had six rebounds, an assist and a steal.
The Bulls return to the United States, but remain on the road Wednesday night as they head to Canisius to take on the cross-town rival Golden Griffs. Tip of is set for 7:00 pm.