NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – The Salisbury University women's basketball team was back in action Wednesday evening, falling to conference foe Christopher Newport University, 78-68, at the Freeman Center in Newport News, Va.
Junior Anna Hackett led the Sea Gull attack, netting a season-high 31 points in the contest. Christopher Newport (7-2, 2-0 CAC) was unable to stop the guard from Germantown, Md., as Hackett went 6-for-10 from the field in the first half for 14 points, and 11-of-18 from the floor for the contest.
The Captains started the game with an 11-0 run over the first 2:45 to take control of the contest. The Sea Gulls got on the board when junior Becca Himes took a pass from classmate Sarah Seipp and put home a layup to start the scoring for the Gulls.
Salisbury (4-3, 1-1 CAC) battled back, pulling within six points, 23-17, with 8:34 left when Seipp slashed through the Captain defense for a layup. Christopher Newport countered with a 14-2 run over the next 3:33, capped by a three-pointer from Kendra Stone to give the Captains a 37-19 lead, for the largest lead of the first half.
The two teams would trade baskets, with the Captains maintaining the 18-point lead with 1:32 remaining in the first half, 41-23, before taking a 44-29 lead into the break.
The Sea Gulls shot 11-of-28 from the floor, connecting on 39.3 percent of their shots in the first half. Christopher Newport was 18-of-33 from the floor in the first 20 minutes, connecting on 54.5 percent of its shots. For the contest, the Sea Gulls finished 24-of-64, connecting on 37.5 percent of their shots. The Captains dropped off their pace in the second half, finishing with a 29-for-64 mark, for a 47.5 percent from the floor.
Coming into the contest, the Sea Gulls were averaging 21.5 turnovers per contest, and gave the ball to the Captains 13 times in the first 20 minutes of play and 20 times in the contest. As well as capitalizing on the Sea Gull turnovers, Christopher Newport gained an edge on the scoreboard in part by outrebounding the Sea Gulls, holding a 20-16 edge in the first half. Salisbury improved in all facets of the game in the secodn half, including crashing the boards with greater efficiency, finishing the contest with a 40-38 advantage on the glass.
Christopher Newport pushed its lead to 59-38, with 13:18 left in the second half before Salisbury went on a 21-10 run to pull within 10 with 5:32 remaining. The Sea Gulls continued to push, pulling with six when Seipp hit a three-pointer to bring the score to 72-66 with 1:47 remaining.
Seipp finished with 20 points on the evening, with no other Sea Gull in double digits. Junior Melanie Mocniak led Salisbury with nine rebounds and added five points.
Tia Perry was one of five Captain players in double digits, leading her team with 16 points.
The Sea Gulls will be back in action after Christmas, traveling to San Juan, Puerto Rico for the San Juan Shootout. Salisbury will play the first of two games in Puerto Rico on December 28, taking on the State University of New York at Oneonta, with the tipoff scheduled for 2 p.m.