By: Ethan Fuller
BOSTON, MA — Wednesday night was not a picture-perfect Terrier victory. The second half, as head coach Marisa Moseley called it, was “brutal.”
But Boston University women’s basketball still found a way to win, securing a low-scoring 47-40 triumph over Lafayette College at Case Gym. The Terriers have now won seven games in a row, improving to 10-4 in the Patriot League and 15-10 on the season. Lafayette falls to 8-6 in conference play (12-12 overall).
Though BU led wire-to-wire, the team nearly relinquished a lead that reached 11 points in the second quarter. The Terriers scored just 18 points in the second half — equal to their total in the first quarter — and struggled to stay aggressive and seek out shots.
“I don’t know if we got anxious or we went Men in Black — someone took our bodies our minds,” Moseley said of the second half. “But it wasn’t our sharpest half.”
Both teams’ offenses grinded to a halt after halftime. BU made just five of 19 field goals, while the Leopards went just 5-27 from the floor. Katie Nelson needed just 13 points to lead the Terriers in scoring; Lafayette wing Sarah Agnello’s ten points paced her team.
“We started to be too patient, and not look for open shots when we were open, and everyone was going way too fast in her head,” Moseley said.
In a rivalry that had already seen its last six matchups decided by five points or less, the seven-point final score proved a lot tougher to overcome than usual.
To their credit, the Terriers neutralized Lafayette’s offense by shutting down Natalie Kucowski. The Leopards’ star scored just four points and was held under double figures for only the third time in conference play this season.
Freshman Maren Durant, who held her own in matchups against top-tier Holy Cross and Bucknell frontcourts, can add the duo of Kucowski and Alexis Santarelli to her list of defeated foes during this win streak. On offense, Durant had a tougher time scoring against the two inside.
“We did a pretty decent job on [Kucowski] and Maren’s size helped,” said Moseley. “We’re gonna keep working and developing her.”
In addition to her three blocks, Durant grabbed nine rebounds, helping her team take a 36-30 edge on the glass. Sophomore Riley Childs led with a game-high ten boards, but Sydney Johnson (4), Katie Nelson (3) and Tenisha Pressley (3) also contributed.
Childs scored 11 points to go with her ten rebounds, making Wednesday’s performance the forward’s third double-double of the season. Childs’ vocal leadership and energy sparked many of the hustle plays that helped her succeed against taller frontcourt players.
“She gets herself going and then she gets her teammates going if it’s an and-one or a big shot,” says Moseley. “It’s just finding ways we can hone that at the right time and for her to stay within herself.”
The victory helps BU stay even with Colgate in a frenetic battle for the second seed in the Patriot League playoffs. It also keeps Lafayette at bay in the race. As the Terriers hit the home stretch, every game against a fellow contender raises the stakes.
“Everyone’s aware of what’s happening in the league, especially when we get down to the end,” Moseley said. “But I think for us, we want to be 1-0 in each game. So there’s no streak, no standings.”
The Terriers hit the road again Saturday to battle American, a team they are currently projected to face in the quarterfinals of the Patriot League playoffs. Tip-off is scheduled for 2:00 p.m.
Featured image by Hannah Yoshinaga.