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UMass women’s basketball takes down Incarnate Word 64-45

(Katherine Mayo/ Daily Collegian)

The Massachusetts women’s basketball team improved to one game above .500 (4-3) with a 64-45 road win over Incarnate Word on Wednesday night in San Antonio. The win on the road equals the total tally of road wins from last season (1-14 away record).

“I’m excited about this one here on the road tonight because this equals the one lonely road win we had last year so hopefully we have more to come here,” UMass coach Tory Verdi said.

Strong shooting and an up-tempo style of play proved to be too much for the Cardinals (1-6), who had 24 turnovers in the game.

“I thought we did a great job in the first three periods of getting defensive rebounds and pushing the pack to get transition baskets that lead to more points in the paint,” Verdi said.

The Minutewomen were in complete control of this game from start to finish, holding Incarnate Word to only 24 points through the first three quarters. However, at times, UMass seemed lackadaisical with the ball, as evidenced by its 22 turnovers in the contest.

“We’re trying to develop some consistency, we have to play all four periods,” said Verdi. “I know were making some adjustments and some changes playing personnel who don’t usually play that much, but there’s no excuse for turning the ball over 22 times against this team.”

Sophomore guard Hailey Leidel kept up her form on the season, dropping 22 points on 7-of-11 from the field. Leidel shot 4-of-5 from beyond the arc, and made good use of trips to the free throw line, shooting 4-of-5 from the charity stripe as well.

“On any night I think she can do what she did tonight and then some, I think her best basketball is ahead of us and it’s good to see her improving her game each and every day, I expect big things from her,” Verdi said.

Maggie Mulligan and Bre Hampton-Bey each concluded the night with 13 points while Leah McDerment dished out a team-high four assists in UMass’ 19-point victory deep in the heart of Texas.

UMass next plays University of Texas Rio Grande Valley in primetime on Friday night with an 8 p.m. tipoff. After that, they will finish off the road trip with a game against Mississippi Valley State University who have yet to add a mark in the win column this season.

Cameron Sibert can be reached at csibert@umass.edu or on Twitter @camsibert.

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