by Tom Utescher
As the 2010 portion of the basketball season came to a close, it became apparent to the women of Chestnut Hill College that some New Year’s resolutions were in order.
In their final appearance before the holiday break, the host Griffins rallied from a nine-point shortfall in the middle of the first half to come within one point of Lock Haven University in the second period, but the visiting Eagles pulled away again to win, 71-58.
The outcome lowered CHC’s season record to 3-7 (1-2 within the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference) while continuing a frustrating pattern for the team. In a number of their losses, the Griffins have been within striking distance of their opponents fairly late in the game, but haven’t been able to seal the deal and come away with a victory.
Asked to characterize her ballclub’s performance in November and December, Griffins head coach Kiesha King started out with one word: underachievement.
“We’re too good a team to keep getting these results,” she elaborated. “There’s too much talent on the floor for us to be 3-7 right now.”
In the team’s 2010 swansong, sophomore forward Lindsay Alexander logged game-high totals in points (19) and steals (three), and also had seven rebounds and five assists. Reserve forward Ashlen Stayrook scored 11 points for the Griffins, but a well-balanced Lock Haven offense landed five scorers in double digits. Forwards Kristen Kudrick and Kacie Hersehy led the way for the winners, with 15 and 14 points, respectively.
In field goal accuracy the visitors led the Griffins by a full ten percentage points, 44 to 34.
“We’re getting open looks, and we’re getting the dump-downs for lay-ups, but we’re not putting the ball in the basket,” Coach King remarked.
Both teams played aggressive defense at the outset, and more than three minutes had gone by when Chestnut Hill senior center Cecelia Herald (eight points, eight rebounds) hit a lay-up to put the first points on the board. Behind 4-3 a little later, Lock Haven engineered a 10-2 run.
The Eagles almost spread the gap to double figures, going ahead 19-10, but lay-ups and free throws by Alexander and Stayrook rallied the host team, and when sophomore Latoya Laing bagged a three-pointer from the left wing, the Griffins were back within two points (25-23) with five minutes left in the half.
A couple of baskets by freshman guard Emily Daugherty helped Lock Haven spread the score to 33-27 by the end of the period.
CHC chalked up the first two field goals of the second half, then hit the first of two free throws to make it a one-point game, 33-32. The locals never were able to tie it up though, as Hershey and Kudrick combined for seven straight points for the Eagles.
Later, with a little over 11 minutes remaining, junior forward Ebony Washington scored from the paint to get the Griffins within two (44-42), but then they missed a chance to pull even as they whiffed on a one-and-one at the foul line. The Eagles scored seven consecutive points to get out of danger, and Chestnut Hill never got that close again.