Hartford, Conn. – Sophomore center Mackenzie Griffin (Stamford, Conn.) totaled 13 points, five rebounds, five steals, and two blocks to lead the Trinity College Bantams to a 58-57 victory over the visiting Smith College Pioneers in women’s basketball action this evening at Oosting Gymnasium. Trinity improves to 9-5 overall with its fifth consecutive win, while Smith falls to 5-8 with its first setback in four games.
With the game tied 52-52 with 2:32 remaining after a jumper by Smith junior forward Rose Drummond (Rye, N.H.), Trinity senior guard Moriah Sweeney (Ramsey, N.J.) stole the ball and raced down the court for a fast-break layup that gave the Bantams the lead for good. Griffin came up with a steal on Smith’s ensuing possession, and senior Taylor Murtaugh (Bronx, N.Y.) scored on a put-back to give Trinity a four-point lead at 56-52 with just over a minute left on the clock. The Pioneers scored quickly on a drive by Drummond and forced a Bantam turnover, but Drummond’s fall-away three-point try with six seconds left fell way short. Senior guard Abby Hancock (Casco, Maine) drained a pair from the charity stripe for a 58-54 Bantam lead, and Smith junior guard Paulina Solis (Santa Ana, Calif.) hit a long trey to cut it to a single point, but time expired.
Trinity led, 22-16 just before the midpoint of the first half after a pair of free throws by Murtaugh, but Smith used a 7-0 run to take a 23-22 lead at the five-minute mark on a layup by Solis. Senior forward Shantel Hanniford (Nantucket, Mass.) gave Trinity the lead right back off a nice dish by sophomore guard Alexa Menard (Wallingford, Conn.), and the Bantams never trailed again. Menard made a steal and a layup to give Trinity a 31-23 lead with 1:13 left before the half, but two free throws by Pioneer senior forward Sydney Parkmond (Waterbury, Conn.) sent the teams to the locker rooms with Trinity leading, 31-25. Bantam senior forward Hannah Brickley (Melrose, Mass.) led all scorers with 13 points at the break.
Trinity extended its advantage to double digits for the only time at 37-27 on a put-back by Brickley, but Solis answered immediately with a three-pointer for Smith. A jumper by Griffin gave the Bantams a 45-37 lead with 9:29 on the clock, but an 8-0 Smith spurt including game-tying free throws by junior center Lauren Weston (Florence, Mass.) knotted the game at 45-45 with 7:22 left to play. Hancock drilled a three-pointer from the left wing for a 48-45 Trinity lead moments later, but the Pioneers tied it again at 50-50 on another Weston free throw. Murtaugh hit a jumper from the right corner just before Drummond tied the game for the final time
Brickley paced Trinity in scoring with 15 points and rebounding with seven boards to go with three steals. Murtaugh scored 12 points off the Bantam bench, and Sweeney finished with six rebounds and four assists. Solis led all scorers with 18 points and added four assists and three steals, while Parkmond totaled 14 points and a game-high nine boards for the Pioneers. Trinity forced 24 turnovers but committed 19. Smith attempted 12 free throws to 11 for the Bantams, but its seven made were one less than Trinity.