February 4, 2014

Team Effort Leads Women's Basketball Past Suffolk 74-71

BOSTON, Mass.—Led by a season-high five double-digit scorers, UMass Boston women's basketball (12-8) snapped a three-game losing streak Tuesday evening with a 74-71 win over cross-town rival Suffolk University (10-8) at Regan Gymnasium.

After trailing 32-31 at the break, UMass Boston used a 19-6 run out of halftime to grab a 12-point lead and held on for a comfortable edge until the final 30 seconds. 

Sophomore Olivia Murphy (Canton, Mass.) led the Beacons with a team-high 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting and a perfect 6-for-6 mark from the free throw line. Murphy also added six rebounds, three assists and three blocks to lead UMass Boston to a win in their final non-conference game of the season.

The Beacons wrapped up their non-conference schedule with a 9-2 record, including a 5-1 mark against Massachusetts opponents. 

Senior point guard Andrea Suffredini (Milford, Mass.) chipped in with 14 points and a game-high three steals. Freshman Chantel Jordan (Brockton, Mass.) and Mallory Nelson (Topsham, Maine) each finished with 11 points, and Katrina Edwards (Springfield, Mass.) ended the contest with 10 points and a team-high eight rebounds.

Jennifer Ruys paced the host Rams with a game-high double-double of 28 points and 10 rebounds on 11-of-20 shooting. Kelsey Schiebel and Shelby Santini pitched in with 15 and 11 points respectively for Suffolk, which dropped their third game in the past four contests.

After falling behind 2-0 in the opening seconds, UMass Boston jumped out to a 19-11 lead at the 11:49 mark behind six of Jordan's career-high 11 points. Schiebel and Ruys combined for an 8-0 run to tie the game at 19 and the two teams went back-and-forth from there, with Suffolk grabbing a 32-31 lead at the buzzer.

The Beacons' second big run of the contest would prove much more decisive, as the 19-6 run gave the visitors a 50-38 with 12:06 to play. Murphy and Suffredini keyed UMass Boston's flurry with six and five points respectively, including combining for a 7-0 run to cap off the run.

Despite their best efforts, Suffolk struggled to cut into the Beacons' lead, with UMass Boston holding on to a three-possession lead or larger until the final 23 seconds.

Schiebel gave the Rams life with a three-pointer to cut the lead to 71-66 with 23 ticks left, but Suffredini and Nelson knocked down 3-of-4 free throws to close out the game and ensure a 74-71 victory.

UMass Boston shot 26-for-54 (48.1 percent) from the field and 18-for-24 (75 percent) from the free-throw line. The host Rams knocked down 42.6 percent (26-for-61) of their shots and went 13-for-15 (86.7 percent) from the charity stripe. 

The Beacons will return home Saturday at 1 p.m. for their Breast Cancer Awareness Game against Eastern Connecticut State University.