SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University women's basketball team hosted No. 10 Christopher Newport University in Capital Athletic Conference play on Saturday afternoon and fell 75-66.
The first quarter saw each side feature a full court press that led to a fast-paced contest with neither side getting to settle into their offensive sets often. With the Captains (9-0, 4-0 CAC) turning the ball over seven times and the Gulls (7-2, 3-1 CAC) four times in the quarter, each side had plenty of opportunities in the opening period.
The teams traded blows throughout with neither team getting a lead bigger than four points, which the Gulls had on three separate occasions. At the start of the second quarter, a late first-quarter push from CNU had the away side up 16-13.
Christopher Newport got off to a fast start in the second quarter. After Josephine Noonan got the second quarter started with a lay up to cut the lead to one point, the Captains went on a 9-0 run before Kaylyn French put a stop to the streak with a layup of her own to bring the score to 25-17.
Down 10 after the CNU run, the Sea Gulls began chipping away at the visitors lead the rest of the quarter. With 1:42 left, a Mary McDonagh three pointer brought Salisbury to within three at 37-34. Salisbury held at their defensive end and came back down where Noonan made a nice lay up to cut the lead for CNU down to one with 39 seconds to go before the break. The score would hold at 37-36 going into half.
Both teams were sharp from the floor in the opening half as Salisbury shot 48.1 percent, hitting 13-of-27 attempts from the field, while the Captains went 13-for-26 (50 percent). With the sharp shooting, little rebound opportunities held CNU to 18 boards and Salisbury to 11 at half even though each side averages over 45 rebounds per game.
Less than 30 seconds into the third quarter, Salisbury managed to get back on top as another McDonagh three brought the score to 39-37, in favor of Salisbury.
At game's end, McDonagh was the Sea Gulls leading scorer with a season-high 18 points to go along with four assists. She managed to hit four of her seven attempts from behind the arc.
However, Christopher Newport dominated most of the quarter and outscored Salisbury 19-13 to bring the score to 56-49. CNU had five offensive boards in the third quarter as it was able to get great production from its post players.
In the fourth quarter the Captains kept feeding the paint and with 6:25 left in the fourth had worked the score up to 62-51 which was at the time the largest lead for either side in the game.
The closest Salisbury would get down the stretch was within seven points as the Captains did not let up.
The Captains outrebounded Salisbury 40-29 on the day as it was the lowest rebound total for Salisbury all season. The previous low for Salisbury was 40 rebounds in a contest when it faced Stevenson University.
Behind McDonagh, the Gulls had three players tied for the team's second highest point total as Noonan, French, and Lauren Rothfeld all had 10 points. Salisbury also got good offensive production from Morgan Maturani who knocked down nine points coming off the bench.
Salisbury returns to action on Thursday, December 29 when it will travel north to take on Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts for a 2 p.m., tip. From there, Salisbury will take on Wellesley College the next day at 1 p.m., as a part of a winter tournament hosted by both Babson and Wellesley.