Women's basketball turns in strong defensive performance in 65-49 loss to No. 1 Bowdoin

First-year Ariana Dalia scored a team-high 15 points and grabbed six rebounds against No. 1 nationally ranked Bowdoin on Friday, January 4, 2019. (Theophil Syslo/Bates College)

LEWISTON, Maine -- The Bates women's basketball team held No. 1 nationally ranked Bowdoin to a season-low in points and outscored the Polar Bears in the fourth quarter in a 65-49 loss Friday night at Alumni Gymnasium. 

Maddie Hasson scored 18 of her game-high 25 points in the first half to pace the Polar Bears (11-0, 1-0 NESCAC) and Abby Kelly scored 12 of her 15 points in the second half. Hasson grabbed 10 rebounds for a double-double and Kelly recorded nine rebounds of her own. Samantha Roy dished out a game-high nine assists.  

First-year Ariana Dalia (Brick, N.J.) led the Bobcats (4-5, 0-1 NESCAC) on offense with 15 points, six rebounds and two assists. Fellow first-year Meghan Graff (South Portland, Maine) also finished in double figures with 12 points to go along with five rebounds. Junior Melanie Binkhorst (West Hartford, Conn.) led Bates in rebounds with eight and assists with five. Senior captain Erika Lamere (Weston, Mass.) turned in a strong performance with eight points on 3-6 shooting. She also blocked a pair of shots, grabbed three rebounds and dished out an assist. First-year Amaari Williams (Brooklyn, N.Y.) came off the bench to score seven points and tally four rebounds.

The Bobcats held Bowdoin to 38.5% shooting and the Polar Bears shot 3-17 (17.6%) from three. For most of the game, Bates did not attempt many outside shots but in the fourth quarter the Bobcats made four threes to finish 5-10 from long range on the night. Overall, the Bobcats shot 30.4% from the field. Bates bested Bowdoin in rebounding on the night by a count of 46-41.

When it came down to it, turnovers proved to be the difference in the game. The Bobcats turned the ball over 21 times and Bowdoin scored 20 points off turnovers. Bowdoin only turned the ball over 10 times and the Bobcats scored just three points off turnovers. Bowdoin also tallied 38 points in the paint to the Bobcats' 18. 

Graff drilled a three with 2:10 remaining in the first quarter to put Bates up 10-9. It proved to be the Bobcats' only lead of the game. Kelly converted a three-point play on the other end to put Bowdoin up 12-10. Williams answered with a layup, tying the game at 12 with 1:36 left in the opening quarter.

With 21 seconds left, Hasson made a layup to put Bowdoin up 14-12. The Polar Bears never surrendered the lead after that. 

The Polar Bears opened the second quarter with five straight points to go up 19-12. Hasson tallied all five of the points for Bowdoin. After the Bobcats called timeout, Lamere answered with a jumper to cut the Bowdoin lead to 19-14 with 8:26 left in the half. 

But the second quarter belonged to Hasson, who scored 11 points to the Bobcats' 10. The Polar Bears led 33-22 at halftime.

The third quarter proved to be a defensive struggle, with both teams tallying their lowest scoring outputs of the night. Dalia struck first with a layup before Hasson answered with a layup of her own. Hasson's layup was the start of a 13-0 run which gave the Polar Bears a 46-24 lead after Kelly hit a three with 2:48 remaining in the third quarter.

Graff stopped the run with a jumper but Bowdoin led by 20 through three quarters.

After only scoring six points in the third quarter, Bates exploded for 21 in the fourth quarter. Dalia led the way with eight points on 3-4 shooting down the stretch. Lamere scored five of her eight points in the fourth quarter and Bates outscored Bowdoin by a count of 21-17. 

Although it wasn't enough to rally for the win, the Bobcats hope their strong performance down the stretch carries over to Saturday's home game against Colby. Tip is set for 3pm.