NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. – Nakira Examond scored 16 second half points to lead the UMass Dartmouth Corsairs to a second half come-back to defeat the University of Southern Maine Huskies 64-56 in a Little East Conference women's basketball game Saturday afternoon at the Trip Athletic Center.
With the win, UMass Dartmouth improves its overall record to 8-2 and remain undefeated in Little East Conference play at 3-0. The Huskies fall to 5-8 overall, and suffer their first conference loss of the season to stand at 2-1.
Examond finished with a game-high totals with 26 points and 14 rebounds. Alicia Kutil added 12 points and 11 rebounds to match Examond with a double-double, while Kailyn Milligan added 11 points off of the bench.
Southern Maine freshman guard Kristen Curley paced three Southern Maine players in double-figures with 19 points, adding four rebounds, one assist and a career-best nine steals. Senior Emily Nicholson (Quispamsis, New Brunswick/Kennebecasis Valley) added 16 points and five rebounds, while junior guard Alexa Srolovitz (Montreal, Quebec/New Hampton School (NH)) had 10 points, seven rebounds, six assists and three steals.
Led by 12 first-half points from Nicholson, Southern Maine raced out to a 33-17 lead after two quarters of play. Limiting the Corsairs, a 2017 NCAA Elite Eight team, to just seven first-half field goals, USM canned five threes in the first two ten-minute periods and closed the second quarter on a 7-0 run.
Led by Examond, the Corsairs rallied to trim USM's lead to six points after the third quarter, outscoring the Huskies 19-9. Examond scored seven points in the quarter, adding five rebounds and two blocked shots as UMD trailed the Huskies 42-36 headed to the fourth. In the final quarter, both teams battled back and forth and the Corsairs tied the game up at 46 with six minutes left in regulation on a layup from Milligan. Both teams exchanged baskets before Curley game USM its final lead of the game 51-48 on a three with just under five and a half minutes to play. The Corsairs put the finishing touches on its rally with four consecutive points from Kutil on two free throws and a layup to grab the lead 54-51 with three minutes to play. Curley made it 54-53 after coming up with her ninth steal of the game and converting a layup, but the Corsairs were able to close the game out on the free throw line for the 64-56 final.
UMD made 16-20 of its free throws in the game, including 12 in the fourth quarter. USM struggled from the charity strip making fifty percent of its attempts, 8-16.
USM hosts Rhode Island College on Wednesday (5:30 pm) for its next contest. It will be just the second home game in the last seven for the Huskies.
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