Women's basketball scores 75-60 home victory over Southern Maine

Allie Coppola's 17 points, 12 rebounds and four assists helped Bates defeat Southern Maine on Nov. 22, 2016. (File photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

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LEWISTON, Maine -- The Bates women's basketball team outscored the University of Southern Maine in each of the last three quarters en route to a 75-60 non-conference victory Tuesday evening in Alumni Gym.

Bates (1-1) picks up its first official win of the season while USM falls to 1-3.

Bates' starting five came up big, particularly in the second half. Four starters scored in double figures and the fifth, senior Bernadette Connors (Windham, N.H.), scored nine and served up a career-high 10 assists.

Senior Allie Coppola (Tarrytown, N.Y.) led the Bobcats with 17 points and 12 rebounds to go with four assists. Junior Lyse Henshaw (Brunswick, Maine) poured in 16 points, shooting 3-for-5 from beyond the arc. Junior Emily Freedland (Marblehead, Mass.) tallied career highs in points (15), rebounds (5), assists (5) and steals (4). Junior Nina Davenport (Freeport, Maine) had 14 points, 11 rebounds and a career-high four blocks.

Chantel Eells and Miranda Nicely scored 12 points apiece for USM. Emily Nicholson had eight points and a team-high seve rebounds, and Katie Howe had eight points and a team-high four assists.

After shooting 40 percent from the field in the first half, Bates made 15-of-27 shots in the second half (.556), including 4-of-9 from three-point territory after a 1-11 effort in the first 20 minutes. Freedland and Henshaw scored 11 points apiece in the second half. The Bobcats also outrebounded the Huskies by a 41-33 margin, including 22-15 in the second half.

USM, by contrast, got colder in the second half, making 9-of-34 shots (.265) to finish at .333 for the game. 

The Huskies finished the first quarter on an 8-2 run to take a 22-14 lead. A three-point play by Jackie Luckhardt made it 14-10, and back-to-back threes by Howe and Nicholson from the left wing pushed the lead to eight at the end of the period. 

Another Howe three gave USM a 10-point cushion in the second quarter, until Henshaw swished a three on a kickout from Coppola. Consecutive jumpers by Coppola narrowed the gap to 29-26. Freedland made a jumper with 1:07 left in the half, and found Coppola with a nice entry pass for a layup to make it 35-32 in USM's favor at the break.

Bates' impressive ball movement only got better in the third quarter. Connors assisted baskets by Freedland, Coppola and Davenport to tie the game at 39-39. A Henshaw three gave Bates a five-point lead, and then Bates embarked on a 10-0 run, most of it in the final two minutes, when first-year Kelli Kennedy (Milbridge, Maine) scored four points and Freedland netted her second three of the period. A three by the Huskies' Kat Locke closed the deficit to 58-48 entering the final period.

Eells scored a pair of hoops to keep it an eight-point game early in the fourth, but a three by Henshaw made it 65-54 with 5:51 to go. Coppola's personal 5-1 run ballooned the lead to 15 with 1:44 to go.

Bates returns to action Nov. 28, hosting the University of New England at 7pm.