GORHAM, Maine – The Castleton University women's basketball team dropped a Little East Conference matchup to the University of Southern Maine on Saturday afternoon, falling by a final score of 58-45 at Hill Gym.
A slow start to the game offensively doomed the Spartans, who fall to 14-9 overall and 6-8 in the LEC after scoring just 17 points in the opening half. The Huskies improved to 13-9 overall and 9-5 in league play with the win.
The Spartans struggled offensively all afternoon, shooting just 25.5 percent (14-of-55) from the floor—their lowest mark of the season—with a 12.5 percent (2-of-16) rate from three. Southern Maine knocked down 20-of-50 from the floor (40.0 percent) with a 4-for-17 mark from three (23.5 percent). Castleton dominated the glass, 44-34, while the Huskies cashed in on 16 points from 17 Castleton turnovers.
Brooke Raiche led all players in scoring with 15 points, making 4-of-10 from the field and 6-of-8 at the free throw line. Katlyn Toomey had 12 rebounds in addition to five points and three assists, while Alexis Quenneville added nine points and six boards. Abbie Lesure contributed on all sides with four points, seven rebounds, three steals and two assists.
Kimberly Howrigan went 4-of-5 from the floor and 6-of-6 at the free throw line to lead the Huskies with 14 points. Kristina Blais added 10 points off the bench, while Alexa Srolovitz grabbed six rebounds to lead the effort on the glass for Southern Maine. The Huskies had seven players contribute five points or more on the afternoon.
Southern Maine opened the game with a jumper by Jackie Luckhardt on the opening possession, taking an early lead and never looking back. The Huskies rattled off eight consecutive points before Ajla Medic got the Spartans on the board with a layup, but Castleton's offensive woes allowed Southern Maine to take a 19-8 lead into the second quarter.
The Spartans got the lead down to seven points, 24-17, midway through the second quarter when Quenneville knocked down a three for Castleton. The Huskies closed out the half with a 7-0 run following the triple, extending the lead to 31-17 into the halftime break.
After the Huskies extended their lead to a game-high 18 points in the third quarter, Castleton used an 8-2 run to cut into the lead, making it 39-27. The Spartans continued to cut into the lead, narrowing the deficit to just eight points after a Quenneville layup. A pair of late third-quarter free throws by the Huskies extended the lead back to double digits, 43-33.
Castleton continued to battle in the final 10 minutes, as Raiche knocked down a three to cut the gap to just seven points once more, 49-42. The lead was then cut to six points, 51-45, before Southern Maine closed out the game on a 7-0 run, winning 58-45.
Castleton returns to the court on Wednesday for the final home contest of the 2018-19 season against Eastern Connecticut. Tip-off is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.