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Brockport bounces back against Bengals

By: Dylan O'Loughlin

Buffalo, NY --- The Brockport Golden Eagles women's basketball team played their worst offensive game of the season this past Saturday against Plattsburgh scoring only 44 points. Today, they got a double-digit victory on the road and defeated the Buffalo State Bengals, 67-53.

Anna Lee led the Golden Eagles in scoring against Buffalo State with 18. (Photo Credits: Liv Metz/Brockport Athletics)

It was a slow start for the Golden Eagles as they shot 4-for-16 from the field and only scored 10 points in the first quarter, clinging to a one-point lead entering quarter two. It was a different story in that second quarter. Brockport guards Anna Lee and Stephanie Jean-Baptiste led the way in scoring in the first half as Lee had 12 points and Jean-Baptiste had eight. Along with great defense that forced the Bengals to take shots from the outside, Buffalo State shot 9-for-31 from the field and 4-for-15 from beyond the arc in the first half. Two of those threes, including one at the first-half buzzer, came from sophomore guard Emma Cohen who led the way in second quarter scoring with six. The Golden Eagles would win the quarter 19-13 and head into halftime with a seven-point lead, 29-22.

"I thought we communicated a lot better today," Lee said. "So, I think if we communicate on defense, it just helps everyone know what's going on, where people are, and it led us to play good defense and stay together out there."

It's been a struggle for Brockport to get strong starts to second halves this season, but today it wasn't. The Golden Eagles would put up one of their highest-scoring quarters of the season, outscoring the Bengals 24-15, shooting 10-for-22 from the field. Six players put points on the board for Brockport in the third, leading the way was Jean-Baptiste with six, and the forwards Zoe Zutes and Zairea Hannah each had five. Brockport would build as big as a 24-point lead over the Bengals this quarter, but Buffalo State would not go out without a fight as they went on an 8-0 run to end the quarter thanks to two more threes from Cohen and a mid-range jumper from forward Adiya Jones.

Zoe Zutes finished with a double-double in the win against Buffalo State (Photo Credits: Liv Metz/Brockport Athletics)

This run would continue into the fourth. The Bengals went on to score five more points and extend the run to 13-0 until the leading three-point shooter in the SUNYAC Zutes stopped the run with an important three to switch momentum back to the Brockport side. After that, Brockport never looked back. After struggling from the three-point line last game shooting 1-16 in total, the treys were falling in the fourth quarter tonight. Including Zutes shot to stop the Bengals run, the Golden Eagles would hit four threes in the quarter, all coming from different players. Jean-Baptiste knocked one down first, then Mandy Brink followed up after her, and Lee knocked down the dagger to put the game out of reach.

"I know we wanted to push the pace in the game," Lee said. "Coach said to just go get the ball and we're going to get that brush screen at the free throw line, get to the rack, and that's exactly what I did. I saw the ball go in today which is nice too."

Stephanie Jean-Baptiste continues her scoring streak as she finished with 17 against Buffalo State (Photo Credits: Liv Metz/Brockport Athletics)

Lee would lead all scorers in the contest with 18 points along with seven rebounds. Jean-Baptiste finished right behind her with 17 and five rebounds and Zutes finished with a double-double, 10 points and 13 rebounds. For Buffalo State, they could not get that much going offensively as Cohen led the way with 12 points, all of them coming from beyond the arc and Maddy Stearsn who had 20 in their previous matchup with the Golden Eagles finished with nine points and seven rebounds.

"I think we just got to stay together and keep it pushing," Lee said. "I think we just take this and move on. I think we keep our heads high, do exactly what we did tonight. We moved the ball really well today, we hit the inside, hit the outside. Everyone was totally unselfish, and I thought that led us to make some more shots. I think our defense was good and it picked it up, so we just got to keep pushing."

Brockport moves back over to the win column and they now sit 10-10 on the season and 6-7 in the SUNYAC. They successfully built cushion in the SUNYAC standings as Fredonia and Plattsburgh sit at 4-8 in SUNYAC play after each taking losses today. The Golden Eagles hope to carry this momentum throughout the road trip as they make the long haul south to face the number one team in the SUNYAC, 11-1 New Paltz this Friday, February 2nd at 5:30 p.m. Listen to that game live on 89.1 the Point with the pregame show beginning at 5:15 p.m.

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