Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass women’s basketball falls to Albany 74-52

Minutewomen can’t slow down the Great Danes offense
Kalina Kornacki
Daily Collegian (2023)

The Massachusetts women’s basketball team fell to the Albany Great Danes 74-52 on Wednesday afternoon. Albany (10-2) started out guns blazing and managed to keep a healthy lead despite the Minutewomen (2-10) continually creeping up during the contest.

The Great Danes started the game on a 20-5 run leading to a 10-point lead at the end of the first frame. By halftime, the lead remained almost unchanged with Albany sitting on a 16 point lead. UMass gave itself a chance at a comeback coming out of the half with an 8-2 run, cutting the lead to 11. That would be the closest it would get as Albany cruised to the 22-point victory.

“I was disappointed in the start and disappointed in the game overall,” head coach Mike Leflar said. “A home game right before Christmas. It should be much more competitive than it was. I don’t care who the opponent is going to be. I’m not happy that we lost by 22.”

The Great Danes used extremely efficient shooting to control the contest with ease. At halftime, they were shooting 61.5 percent from the 3-point line and ended the contest shooting 55 percent. From the field, they shot 53 percent.

Leading the way for the Minutewomen was reigning Freshman of the Week Lilly Taulelei, who boasted an impressive 8 points on 66 percent from the floor as well as four rebounds before fouling out. Kristin Williams added 14 points on 6-13 shooting with three assists.

“[Williams] did a nice job offensively. I think in the first half, she had a couple opportunities to take some forced and contested shots, which she and I have talked about, and she pulled back and kept us in offense and something better happened for us,” Leflar said.

For Albany, four scorers reached double digits with Meghan Huerter scoring a game high 15 points on an efficient 71 percent from the field, all of which were from behind the 3-point line.

“I just talked to the team and a theme the last week and a half at practice was just kind of eliminating mental errors and we did not eliminate those [Wednesday],” Leflar said. “If teams beat us, okay, I get it. Tip your hat to them. Teams make shots with a hand in their face, okay. I just feel like collectively our mental errors have added up.” The Minutewomen committed 22 turnovers in Wednesday’s game.

A positive note for UMass was Alexsia Rose who saw action in just her second game back from Injury. The East Carolina University transfer came in with a spark for a team that didn’t have one throughout the contest. She ended with eight points.

“I thought [Rose] brought a nice energy off the bench … She’s continuing to come back and get as close to 100 percent as possible. It was good to see her make a difference [Wednesday]. Unfortunately, in a 20-point game. I would love to see that happen if it was in a one possession game,” Leflar said.

The Minutewomen will start Atlantic 10 play after another 10-day gap when they travel to Richmond to face off against the red hot VCU Rams. Tip off on Saturday Dec. 30 is slated for 4:30 p.m.

Owen Shelffo can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @owen_shelffo.

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