PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Less than 72 hours removed from a last-second loss over the weekend, UMass Dartmouth prevailed in the final grains of the hourglass as senior Jess Korzec (West Brookfield, Mass.) splashed a buzzer-beating elbow jumper to sink the Anchorwomen, 59-58, in a tight Little East Conference affair at the Murray Center on Tuesday evening.
The guard finished with a game-high five dimes to go along with 14 points, while teammate Nakira Examond (New Bedford, Mass.) got her ninth double-double to highlight her line of 20 points, 10 rebounds, four assists, two steals, and two swats for the Corsairs (11-3). Helping share the offensive workload for Rhode Island College (10-4) were junior Ornela Livramento (Pawtucket, R.I.) and sophomore Brooke Young (West Warwick, R.I.), who each chipped in 10.
How it Happened
- The two opponents matched up fairly evenly in the first quarter, with the Anchorwomen standing atop a 16-14 advantage through one. Despite taking a 27-20 lead on a Korzec layup, the hosts converted on seven straight free throws sandwiching a Young bucket for a 29-27 score in their favor.
- UMass Dartmouth overcame a five-point halftime deficit (34-29) by outscoring RIC 18-8 in the third stanza, utilizing an 8-0 run held up by a trey from Korzec and junior Ashley Brown (Fairhaven, Mass.). With 96 ticks to go in the penultimate stanza, freshman Jordan Moretti (Johnston, R.I.) put the clamps down on her freshman counterpart Maire Gallagher (Worcester, Mass.) for a pair of layups to make it a 47-42 ballgame entering the fourth.
- Leading 56-49 with 3:26 left in regulation, a Taylor Thompson (Greenvile, S.C.) three was soon encored by a Sophia Gurrier (Waltham, Mass.) jumper to lead up to Gallagher's layup, closing out a crucial string of nine unanswered scores to give the Anchorwomen a 58-56 lead with 47 seconds to go.
- With approximately three seconds separating the game clock and the shot clock, Gallagher drove to the rim with 11 seconds but Examond beat the freshman to the spot just outside of the restricted area to take the charge and get the ball back for the Corsairs.
- Head coach Matt Ducharme made use of a 30-second timeout to advance the ball up court in front of his bench, where the rock ultimately came down low to Examond. While the forward could not get the shot to go, the Corsairs got a second life when the ball was knocked out of bounds by an Anchorwoman. After the referees convened, one second was put back on the clock to allow UMass Dartmouth to draw up a play.
- With senior Danyel Gonzalez (Pawtucket, R.I.) serving as the trigger along the baseline, three white jerseys swarmed Examond under the basket to open up space at the right elbow which allowed Korzec to catch and square up to find nothing but the bottom of the net as the red lights illuminated to cap off the seesaw tilt.
Inside the Numbers
- With 13 steals this evening, the Blue and Gold has swiped 10+ passes in all but two battles this season.
- The Corsairs committed a season-low 13 fouls tonight.
- UMass Dartmouth was swinging the ball well for unselfish play, assisting on 15 of their 20 made field goals – its best ratio thus far this season (75%).
- Rhode Island College owned the battle of the boards, 48-35.
- The conference clash featured 11 ties and nine lead changes, with no more than seven points separating the squads.
The Corsairs return to the Tripp this Thursday to host Western Connecticut for another LEC showdown, tipping off at 3 p.m. Rhode Island College has off until Saturday, when they travel to UMass Boston for a 1 p.m. tip-off against the Beacons.
(Recap by: Kyle Diangkinay '19, Athletic Communications Graduate Assistant)
(Photo Credit: Paris Felogloy '18)