December 20, 2010
Cortland women come up short
GENEVA — When junior guard Brittany Cohen’s 3-point shot bounced off the back rim just before the final buzzer blared, SUNY Cortland’s remarkable second half comeback had come to an end.
The Red Dragons unbeaten ways were over, too.
William Smith women turned back Cortland’s rally from a 15-point second half deficit to secure a 72-70 victory Saturday afternoon at Bristol Gymnasium, handing the Red Dragons their first setback after having opened this basketball season with six straight victories.
Kristen Kush had 21 points and Mollie Danehy 20 as the hosts improved to 4-5 on the season, despite almost squandering a 65-50 lead over the final 9:57 after guard Jacqueline Murphy’s lay-up produced William Smith’s largest advantage.
Cohen finished with a career-best 20 points for the Red Dragons, and also picked up four assists. Junior center Megan Maycumber also had a career-best with 18 points, and shared top team rebounding honors with Molly Byrne and Jennifer Patten with six apiece.
Byrne made 3-of-5 shots from 3-point distance and finished with 12 points, senior forward Patten had 11 points, junior Micki Volpini had four assists and senior Jen Polan came off the bench to come up with three steals and block a couple of William Smith shots.
Down by 15 midway through that second half, after having trailed 37-30 at the break in their first game since Dec. 4, the Red Dragons were still behind 70-60 with 5:49 left on the clock. Cohen hit a lay-up at the 4:51 mark, and neither team scored again until Polan made a 3-pointer with 2:37 on the clock to pull the Red Dragons within five.
Patten hit two foul shots with 1:54 left to cut the deficit to three at 70-67. Cortland got the ball back, but Danahy’s steal and lay-up with 1:22 remaining gave the Herons a 72-67 lead.
Byrne knocked home a 3-pointer with 41 seconds left to bring Cortland within two again at 72-70. Polan blocked a shot with 12 seconds left, and the Herons got the ball out of bounds with one second on the shot clock. A quick shot missed, and Cortland had a final chance to tie or win.
However, Cohen’s potential game-winning trey with two seconds left hit off the back of the rim.
Cortland shot 53 percent from the floor during a 40-point second half awakening, having made just 10--of-30 first half attempts including just 1-of-7 success beyond the 3-point arc. William Smith won the battle of the boards 39-34, with the diminutive 5-foot-4 Murphy getting to 10 caroms to lead all rebounders.
After the holiday break, Cortland hosts Clarkson on Wednesday, Jan. 5, in a 3 p.m. non-league contest at Corey Gymnasium.
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