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November 15, 2017

UMass powers past Towson with hard defense and selfless passing

(Jessica Picard/ Daily Collegian)

The Massachusetts women’s basketball team were able to pick up a comfortable win against Towson on Sunday at home. Hard nose defense from the entire team helped get the win, forcing Towson to commit a total of 27 turnovers.

Offensively, Bre Hampton-Bey contributed with 13 points and five rebounds while also facilitating other scoring opportunities for her teammates. The freshman guard was credited with eight assists, the most amongst the Minutewomen (2-0).

However, Hampton-Bey made it clear after the game that, “Defense comes before offense, and we take pride in that every game.” Hampton-Bey was able to get herself four steals to add to her impressive stat line.

Dual threat forward Genesis Rivera had her first 20-point scoring game of the regular season. Her afternoon started slow from behind the arc, going 0-4 before finding the bottom of the net late in the third quarter.

It was at the rim however, where Rivera made her living this game, scoring 21 points and going seven-for-seven from the free throw line.

“Most importantly, we made shots, we’re scoring,” coach Tory Verdi said. “We are out-scoring our opponents, we’re sharing the ball, we had 19 assists, and I think our kids are just outworking our opponents at this time.”

Having finished with 34 total rebounds, six less than Towson (0-1), it was crucial for UMass to make the shots they took. The Minutewomen shot 44 percent from the field while Towson shot only 34 percent.

Having made only 19-of-56 shots and 1-of-16 from beyond the arc, Towson’s shooting woes was ultimately its downfall. Like the Minutewomen, the Tigers had success at the free throw line shooting 10-11 on the game.

The young guns sophomore Hailey Leidel and freshman Paige McCormick continue to have good starts to the season, scoring 10 points and 11 points respectively. Leidel was able to go 2-3 from behind the arc while McCormick made four of the 10 shots she attempted along with going 2-2 from the line.

The Minutewomen now prepare for back-to-back away matchups in North Dakota against North Dakota State and North Dakota. North Dakota State has won each of its first two games by margins exceeding 40 points (87-43 over Maryville State and 105—58 over NJIT).

The Minutewomen matched up against North Dakota State last year in Amherst and came away with a 70-58 victory. Leidel led UMass that day with 24 points and Maggie Mulligan had a double-double scoring 12 points while bringing in 10 rebounds.

Tip-off in Fargo, North Dakota is set for 8 p.m. Friday.

 

Cam Sibert can be reached at csibert@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @camsibert.

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