Brown leads women's hoops in loss to unbeaten USM

LEWISTON, Maine -- Nicole Garland's shooting and Jordan Grant's 12 points, 12 rebounds, four assists and four steals propelled the University of Southern Maine to a 68-54 victory over the Bates College women's basketball team in a non-conference game on Tuesday evening.

Garland scored 16 points, hitting 4-of-6 three-point attempts, and Nash Biliew added 10 off the bench to help the Huskies (3-0) stay undefeated.

Sophomore Molly Brown (South Dartmouth, Mass.) scored a game-high 18 points and grabbed nine rebounds for the Bobcats (0-3). Senior Allie Beaulieu (Swampscott, Mass.) pitched in 13 points, while senior Taryn O'Connell (Georgetown, Mass.) grabbed 11 rebounds and junior Julia Rafferty (Reading, Mass.) dished out a game-high four assists in the losing cause.

USM held a single-digit lead for the majority of the first half, on into the first seven minutes of the second half, when Garland's three-pointer capped a 9-2 USM run and gave the Huskies a 47-36 lead with 12:46 left in the game.

O'Connell scored a three-point play with an assist by senior Brianna Hawkins (South Portland, Maine), cutting the lead to 47-39, but the Huskies then ripped off 12 straight points, ballooning the lead to 59-39 with 7:12 to play. Garland made a three and a layup in the decisive 12-0 run, and Biliew scored five of the points on a free throw and a pair of layups.

Jordan and Rebecca Knight (six points, nine rebounds, three assists, four blocked shots) hit back-to-back layups to start the game, and a three by Garland made it 7-0 in USM's favor.

Bates then went on a 13-4 run, fueled by a pair of threes by Beaulieu and a three-point play by sophomore Allaina Murphy (Poland Spring, Maine) that made it 13-11. Beaulieu and Brown dueled with USM's Knight and Grant as the teams went through five ties, the last at 21-21 wiht 6:36 left. Another three by Garland made it 24-21 with 6:10 left in the half. USM never trailed again, going into halftime with a 37-30 lead.

Grant had 10 points and eight boards in the first half, while Knight pitched in six points, six boards and two blocks. Garland was 2-for-3 behind the arc in both periods. Beaulieu had 11 points and four rebounds in the period, followed by Brown with nine points and five boards.

Bates next plays at Husson on Nov. 27 at 7pm, while USM plays host to St. Joseph's on Sunday, Nov. 25 at 2pm.