LEWISBURG, PA – The University at Buffalo women's basketball team was able to overcome a 16-point first half deficit on Saturday night, tying the game late, but ultimately falling to Bucknell, 78-71. The Bulls scored a season-high 46 points in the second half, but the host Bison were just as good, shooting nearly 62 percent from the floor in the final 20 minutes.
In a game that took place in the old Davis Gymnasium as part of throwback night, the home team scored the first seven points of the game, racing out to a 14-2 lead just over four minutes in. Bucknell led by as many as 16 in the opening half as a fast break layup from Sheaira Jones gave the Bison a 22-6 lead with 11:48 remaining in the half. The Bulls went on to respond by outscoring Bucknell by nine over the final 30 minutes of the game, but the slow start became too much. A three pointer from junior Margeaux Gupilan cut the deficit to 33-25 with 1:30 left in the half, but Bucknell hit one more basket to take a 10-pont advantage into the half.
The Bulls turned up the pressure in the second half led by freshman Rachael Gregory, who scored all 17 of her points in the second half. Bucknell continued to lead by 12 with 7:37 left, but a three pointer from sophomore Valerie Majewski ignited a 17-5 run, tying the game up at 67-67; the first tie since the two teams were deadlocked at zero. Six of the points in the run came on a pair of three pointers from freshman Karin Moss, who finished the game with a career-high 15 points. However, Bucknell responded to the tie by going on a 6-0 run over the next minute and forty seconds to regain a 73-67 lead with just 1:51 left. A pair of free throws from Gregory with 28 seconds left put the Bulls within three, but they would get no closer.
Gregory tied her career high with those 17 points, a mark she set against Youngstown State. For the third time in the last four games she finished with nine rebounds, just missing her first career double-double. Gregory went a career-best 9-for-11 from the free throw line.
Moss finished with 15 points as she went 5-for-8 from behind the arc. The Troy, MI native added two rebounds and three steals. Moss and Majewski went on to hit eight of Buffalo's nine three pointers in the game. Majewski tied her career high with 11 points.
Redshirt sophomore Kristen Sharkey also reached double figures as she finished with 11 points. Sharkey continued her outstanding numbers from the free throw line as she hit all five of her attempts. She added seven rebounds and two blocked shots.
After scoring 55 points against Eastern Illinois, the UB bench again put up big numbers, outscoring Bucknell's bench, 41-9.
Bucknell, which had five players in double figures in scoring, was able to win despite taking 22 less shots than the Bulls. The Bison shot 55.1 percent from the floor, including 61.9 percent in the second half. Shelby Romine led all scorers with 20 points. She did most of her work from the free throw line where she was 10-of-14.
The Bulls now begin a season-long four game homestand as they host St. Bonaventure on Wednesday night. Tip off is at 7:00 pm.