Sunday, February 21, 2016

Women's Basketball: St. Thomas Aquinas 75 UDC 56

Senior Day photo op!

From our friends at UDC Athletics...

St. Thomas Aquinas Stuns UDC, 75-56 in Nationally Televised ECC Contest

Playing in front of a national audience via the American Sports Network's television broadcast and NCAA's web stream, the University of the District of Columbia women's basketball team suffered a 75-56 setback vs. St. Thomas Aquinas College in East Coast Conference play at the UDC Sports Complex Sunday afternoon.

With the loss, UDC (14-4) is now in a tie with Roberts Wesleyan College (14-4) for 2nd place in the conference standings. The Firebirds' three-game win streak came to a halt as they fell to 19-7 overall.

Head Coach DeWayne Burroughs talks strategy

STAC, which had lost the previous five meetings vs. UDC going back to 2012-13, evened the season series and improved to 16-10 overall. The Spartans have now won three straight games as they improved to 9-9 in the ECC and solidify their post-season bid as a top-6 team in the league.

Fantastic turnout at the UDC Sports Complex

Senior guard Tajruba Baldwin-Kollore, one of five seniors honored in a pre-game Senior Day ceremony, tied for the game-high with 22 points while also registering six rebounds and two assists. Senior forward Tatyana Calhoun hauled in a game-high 11 rebounds.

Taj Baldwin-Kollore (#22) led UDC with 22 points

Meanwhile, the Spartans out-shot UDC 49-percent to 38-percent from the field and 38-percent to 20-percent from three-point range. They also had 20 assists to just 12 turnovers while UDC had just nine assists and a season-high 23 turnovers. STAC capitalized on UDC's uncharacteristic bad ball handling with 37 points off of turnovers.

Great trap defense by Arielle Ward (#5) & Tatyana Calhoun (#32)

STAC was led by three scorers in double-figures, including guard Alex Bertolino's game-high tying 22-points. Her backcourt counterparts Jenna Erickson and Samantha Burden added 16 and 15 points, respectively, with Erickson also registering a game-high seven assists and three steals.

Alex Bertolino (#21) led STAC with 22 points

The Spartans came out red-hot, connecting on their first three, three-point attempts of the day – each one by a different player. They led wire-to-wire as they scored the game's first five points and raced out to a 13-3 lead three-and-a-half minutes into the action. Baldwin-Kollore capped a 9-1 Firebirds spurt with a  jump shot at 3:43 to bring UDC within two, 14-12, but STAC closed the first period on a 6-1 run and led 20-13 at first quarter's end.

16 points, 7 dimes & 3 steals for Jenna Erickson

In the 2nd quarter, a Calhoun layup followed by a Baldwin-Kollore three-pointer accounted for a 5-0 run to start the period as UDC closed within two, 20-18. The Firebirds then answered a KC Sokolski layup at 7:06 with a jump shot by senior guard Myla Somerville to make it 22-20 at the 6:31 mark.

Senior Myla Somerville (#2) scored 7 points

But starting with a Bertolino three-pointer at the 5:18 mark, the Spartans went on a 19-4 tear to close out the half and opened up a 41-24 halftime lead.

Iman Scott (#24) grabbed 8 rebounds

STAC essentially put the game away when it opened the 2nd half on a 10-2 run, with five of its points coming from Bertolino. Sokolski's jump shot at 4:10 pushed the Spartan's lead to 51-26. STAC would led 55-32 at the end of the 3rd quarter.

Brandi Henton (#20, 8 points) provided a second half spark

The Firebirds fought to try and get back in the game as Tiara Goode scored five points during a 9-2 UDC run to open the final period, and at 7:39, the Firebirds trailed, 57-41. That was as close as UDC would come though, as STAC went on to win comfortably, 75-56.

Tiara Goode (#14) added 7 points & 5 rebounds

UDC will conclude the 2015-16 regular season with road games at NYIT (February 25th) and LIU Post (February 27th.)

Jaslynn Rollins (#21) added 2 points & 1 steal

Click here for today's box score.