Despite Strong Effort, Women's Basketball Falls To Miami, 63-57
Nov. 28, 2009
CORAL GABLES, Fla. - In a gritty defensive effort, the UMass women's basketball team was edged out by Miami, 63-57, in the championship game of the Wyndham Miami Thanksgiving Tournament. Sophomores Kristina Danella and Nicole Jones totaled 14 and 13 points, respectively for the Minutewomen (3-3) and represented UMass on the all-tournament team. The Hurricanes remain undefeated at 7-0 after taking the tournament title.
Danella's 14 for UMass included a 7-for-7 performance at the line along with nine rebounds. She has now made 27 consecutive free throws, dating back to Nov. 18 against St. John's. Jones added six boards and two blocks, while freshman Jasmine Watson came off the bench and narrowly missed a double-double with nine points and eight rebounds. Junior Cerie Mosgrove contributed eight points and six rebounds to tie a career high on the glass. Senior Diatiema Hill dished six assists and grabbed three steals.
A pair of free throws from Danella gave the Minutewomen the first points of the night as the squad led for nearly the entire first half. With 13:32 on the clock, Danella was fouled from three-point range and sunk all three attempts to push the UMass advantage to five at 11-6. However, Miami fought back and closed the gap to one with threes from Shenise Johnson and Stefanie Yderstrom.
The Minutewomen came close to breaking away from the Hurricanes once again as an 8-3 run gave the squad its largest lead of the night, seven, with 4:09 remaining in the first half. The stretch was capped off by a Mosgrove trey that moved the score to at 23-16.
Miami responded by scoring the final eight points of the half and climbed on top for the first time, 24-23, with 52 seconds left before the intermission.
Even though the Minutewomen only overtook the Hurricanes on one more occasion, 30-28 at 15:52, courtesy of a jumper by Jones, the second half was more tightly-contested than the first. UMass tied the score on four occasions and kept the deficit below five until Johnson added free throws with seven seconds left to push the final margin to six points. Over the final five minutes of the contest, only one field goal was made by either team, a basket by Yderstrom at 1:19.
Riquna Williams paced Miami with 17 points, while Johnson, the tournament MVP, followed with 15 and four steals and Yderstrom tallied 11. Diane Barnes was the top rebounder on the night with 11, including five on the offensive glass.
UMass shot 18-for-48 (37.5%) overall, 6-for-19 (31.6%) from three and made 15-of-20 (75%) at the foul line. The Hurricanes finished 21-for-67 (31.3%) from the field, 7-for-22 (31.8%) from three and converted 14-of-21 (66.7%) free throws. UMass held a 20-14 edge in points in the paint. Miami outscored the Minutewomen 11-0 on fast break points and 9-2 in points off turnovers.
The Minutewomen will be back in action on Wednesday, Dec. 2, on the road against Northeastern with a noon start.
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