ST. MARY's CITY, Md. - The Salisbury University women's basketball team traveled to St. Mary's College of Maryland for a Capital Athletic Contest on Wednesday night and fell to the Seahawks, 72-69.
The Sea Gulls (13-11, 9-8 CAC) got down 4-0 early but Paige Bryce hit a spot up jumper from the wing at the 9:39 mark to give Salisbury its first points. The Sea Gulls got a lead, ahead 11-9, but the home side controlled the rest of the quarter. Salisbury got to a tie at 15-15 however St. Mary's (7-17, 5-12 CAC) ended on a 4-0 run to close out the period.
Down 19-15 at the start of the second, Mary McDonagh got things going with a three-pointer to start a 10-0 run for Salisbury to open the quarter. The run was capped with another McDonagh three-pointer at 6:54 before the Seahawks got their first points with a three of their own at 5:11.
McDonagh ended her day with 10 points on just four field goal attempts, going 3-for-4 from the floor (including 2-for-2 from three), and 2-for-2 from the charity stripe. She also added five assists.
St. Mary's did not let Salisbury run away with the game however as it tied the game up with a difficult, contested layup at 1:11 but Lauren Rothfeld had a quick catch-and-shoot from Ashlyn Smith on the other end to bring the Salisbury lead to 33-30. Just as Rothfeld hit her quick three, the Seahawks got one of their own tying the game at 33, but Salisbury held a 34-33 lead at the half.
Rothfeld finished the game with 16 points and five boards.
Kelsie Bacon and McDonagh led the squad with eight points at the break as the Salisbury guards got the better of the Seahawks in the opening half, while Kaylyn French was close behind with seven. Bacon would end the contest with 10 points, including going 2-for-2 from three-point range.
In the third, the Seahawks worked up a three-point advantage but Rothfeld stopped some of the momentum with a lay in at 6:22. After Rothfeld's basket St. Mary's went for three points in a row but a Rothfeld three-point play and Josephine Noonan layup got Salisbury back on top, 42-41. A free throw from Noonan at 1:44 got Salisbury an eight-point lead at 50-42, its biggest of the game at that point, with Salisbury getting the better of the Seahawks all quarter and ending it ahead 52-49 due to a late push from the Seahawks.
Noonan had a great day down low, going for 16 points in the defeat while adding six boards. French and Smith led the team in rebounds with seven.
The Seahawks started the fourth with an 11-0 run, retaking the lead and bringing the score to 60-54 when French stopped the run at 4:48 with a mid-range jumper. With the Gulls looking to chip away at the lead, a Rothfeld step-back two from the wing at 1:23 got them within two points at 64-62 and gave Salisbury four players in double-digit scoring on the day. After St. Mary's got a basket of their own, McDonagh found Rothfeld underneath the bucket on an inbound play that brought the Seahawk lead down to two, 66-64, with just under a minute to go.
From there the Sea Gulls started fouling the home team and they went 6-for-10 on their free throws in the last 45 seconds to close out the contest, 72-69. Salisbury had the ball with less than four seconds to play and a chance for a three-pointer to tie the contest but they could not get a good look to force overtime.
The Sea Gulls return to play on Saturday, February 18 with a 1 p.m., tip against Frostburg State University on the road.