NEW BRITAIN, Conn. – Central Connecticut outlasted the Bryant University women's basketball team, 61-53, in the Bulldogs' first game back since Jan.15.
It was a tough night from the free-throw line for Bryant as they shot 2-of-15 from the stripe which was the difference in the eight-point NEC decision.
Seniors Brooke Bjelko and Kandis Taylor led the Black and Gold with double-figure scoring. Bjelko led with a double-double of 11 points and 10 rebounds shooting five-for-15 from the field, followed by Taylor who chipped in 10 points off five-of-eight shooting and four steals. Both Juliette Golden and Nicole Gallagher added nine points while Fatou Jallow contributed eight.
Central Connecticut 61, Bryant 53
Records: Bryant (4-5, 2-3) | Central Connecticut (3-6, 3-6)
Location: Detrick Gymnasium (New Britain, Conn.)
- Bryant's free throw shooting performance was the x-factor in tonight's game as they were unable to convert at the charity stripe. The Black and Gold shot just 2-of-15 from the line as Bjelko and Golden were the lone Bulldogs to grab the two free throws.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The Bulldogs started strong with an early 11-4 lead spearheaded by Golden with four of the 11 points.
- However, back-to-back transition layups gave CCSU the momentum to take a two-point lead with just under a minute to play in the first frame. But Jallow sank a floater in the paint to tie the game just before the end of the quarter, 13-13.
- The second quarter saw four lead changes with no real runs from either team as the Bulldogs had trouble taking care of the ball with seven second-quarter turnovers, adding up to a total of 12 in the first half alone. The Blue Devils were able to capitalize eight points off the turnovers as they took the first half, 29-26.
- A layup from Jallow to open the second half put Bryant within one, but that was as close as they would get in the third quarter as the Blue Devils grew to a six-point lead at the midway point of the quarter.
- Central Connecticut posted its best field goal percentage of the game in the third frame shooting six-for-14 for 42.9%.
- Eight of Central's 18 fourth-quarter points came from the foul line as they went eight-for-ten in the final quarter.
- The Blue Devils grew to their largest lead of the night of eight points with one minute remaining in the game. They went on to hold the lead before the final buzzer, 61-53.
- Bjelko posted a double-double of 11 points and 10 rebounds. She also added one assist and one steal.
- Taylor netted ten points, five rebounds, and a game-high four steals.
- Gallagher led the Black and Gold with three assists. The sophomore also contributed eight rebounds and one steal.
- Bryant posted a 37.5 field goal percentage off 24-of-64 shooting. The Bulldogs hit just three three-pointers (3-17) which all came from Gallagher.
- The Bulldogs outrebounded CCSU, 46-36.
- Central Connecticut shot 20-of-53 from the field for a 37.7 field goal percentage.
- Bjelko's double-double was her fifth of the season and tenth of her career.
- Gallagher tied her season-best of five assists.
- Central Connecticut holds their all-time series record in New Britain, 8-5, as they snap its four-game losing streak.
- Despite the loss, Bryant still holds onto the overall all-time series record, 14-11.
The Bulldogs return to the Detrick Gymnasium tomorrow night on Wednesday, Feb. 9 for a 7 p.m. tip on NEC Front Row.