The UB women’s basketball team (1-0, 0-0 MAC) came from behind against the Canisius Golden Griffins (0-1, 0-0 MAAC) in the season opener at Alumni Arena Monday night, winning 69-60. The Bulls dominated the second half, outscoring Canisius 43-28 in the latter 20 minutes and grabbing the lead in the fourth quarter after trailing by 10 in the third.
Monday also marked the beginning of UB head coach Becky Burke’s second season coaching the team as she looks to build upon last year's 12-16 (7-11 MAC) record, which earned the Bulls the No. 8 seed in the MAC Tournament and ended with a first-round exit.
The Bulls were down 32-26 heading into the second half and were behind until the fourth quarter, but transfer redshirt senior guard Chellia Watson and freshman guard Kirsten Lewis-Williams took control, combining for 23 points in the second half
“I think we showed a lot of maturity,” Burke said at the postgame press conference. “[It took] a lot of poise to be down double figures in the second half [and come back].”
Burke said she was proud of the defense her team played and will “break this film down” and “watch every minute of it” to learn from it.
Watson ended the night with 21 points, one steal, two blocks, six assists, and four rebounds. Lewis-Williams put up 16 points, two steals, one block, three assists, and four rebounds. Both players made their UB debuts and were a big portion of Monday’s momentum-building, home-opening win.
Following her first collegiate game, Lewis-Williams said, “Coming in, the game’s so much faster from high school, everybody’s so much stronger.” But Lewis-Williams says she’s been “focused on the defensive end” and “locked on getting stops.”
The Bulls (1-0, 0-0 MAC) look to ride this momentum into their next matchup against Old Dominion (1-0, 0-0 SBC) in the Mid-American Conference (MAC)-Sun Belt Conference (SBC) Challenge on Saturday, Nov. 11 in Norfolk, Virginia.
Michael P. Scotto is a sports editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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