WILLIMANTIC, CT- Host Eastern Connecticut State made eight of 10 free throws in overtime and held off the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's women's basketball team, 54-51, in the first game of a Little East Conference doubleheader at Geissler Gymnasium Tuesday evening.
The Corsairs, who led at halftime, 27-16, fell victim to a late ECSU rally. Jill Ritrosky, who hit a pair of free throws to tie the score at 40-40 with 2:20 remaining, made a three-point play with 1:44 left to give the Warriors their first lead of the game at 43-40. UMD sophomore guard Melissa Daigle (Rockland, MA/Rockland HS) connected on a lay up with 1:21 remaining to make the score 43-42, and Shannon McCourt was fouled and made one of two free throws to put ECSU ahead by two before senior forward Colleen Moriarty (Canton, MA/Canton HS) hit a jump shot with 10 seconds left to tie the score and send the game to overtime.
Kristina Forsman hit a pair of free throws on the first possession of overtime to put ECSU ahead for good. Ritrosky added two free throws with 2:37 left, and a Forsman jumper with 1:48 remaining made it 50-44.
Sophomore forward Erin Fahey (Salem, MA/St.Mary's HS-Lynn) connected to make it 50-46, but four more free throws by Forsman sandwiched around a three-pointer by UMD freshman guard Colleen Kane (Arlington, MA/Arlington HS) made it 54-49 with 36 seconds left. Sophomore guard Kelsey Garrity (Somerville, MA/Somerville HS) made a lay up with 29 seconds left and Forsman missed a pair of free throws, but the Corsairs were unable to score again before time expired.
"We didn't shoot the ball well," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Amanda Van Voorhis. "Eastern Connecticut played us in a zone the majority of the second half, and we had a tough time connecting from deep. We didn't attack their zone well, and Colleen was in foul trouble and was taken out of her rhythm. Both teams worked very hard, but Eastern worked a little bit smarter tonight."
Moriarty, who fouled out in overtime, led UMass Dartmouth with 12 points, while Garrity had 11. Ritrosky had 14, McCourt 11, and Forsman and Brianna Leonard 10 apiece for the Warriors. Junior forward Erika Bornemann (Canton, MA/Canton HS) led UMD with 10 rebounds, but Ritrosky had 15 and McCourt 13 for ECSU, which out rebounded the Corsairs, 49-45 and made 15 of 24 free throws to the Corsairs' six of 11.
UMass Dartmouth dropped to 10-2 and 3-1 in the Little East Conference with the defeat, while Eastern Connecticut improved to 4-9 and 2-2 in LEC play with the victory. The Corsairs will return to action when they visit Salem State Thursday evening. The Colonials will visit St. Joseph's (ME) Thursday evening.