NORTHFIELD, Vt. - The Norwich University women's basketball team fell to Colby-Sawyer College in Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) play on Tuesday evening, as the last second game-winner fell just short and the Chargers prevailed 55-53.
The games started with both teams on offensive runs, as Norwich opened the action with a 7-2 run before Colby-Sawyer responded with a 10-0 run of their own to take a 12-7 lead early. Sandra Carlsten (Bandhagen, Sweden) banged home a three-pointer to start the second quarter and give Norwich a 17-16 lead. The two teams traded blows for much of the second quarter, concluding with Riley Bennett (Hopkinton, N.H.) hitting a baseline jumper to give Norwich a 34-32 halftime lead.
The Chargers controlled the third quarter of play, outscoring Norwich by a 13-7 margin to take a 49-41 lead into the final stanza. The Cadets started to turn things around with about six minutes to go, as Mary Casamassa (Wexford, Pa.) pulled off a three-point play and Naomi Rinaldo (Middlefield, Conn.) drew a clutch offensive foul on the next Chargers possession to put the momentum firmly in Norwich's favor. Casamassa netted her eighth four quarter point with a bucket in the paint with two minutes to go to cut the lead to 55-53. After the two teams traded turnovers and missed shots over the final two minutes, Norwich forced a missed three-pointer with under ten seconds remaining and snagged the ensuing rebound as team wound down. The Cadets gave a long heave as time expired, but it fell well short and the Chargers held on for the 55-53 victory.
Mary Casamassa led the way for Norwich with 17 points on 6-10 shooting along with six rebounds and three assists. Caileigh Travers (Valley Cottage, N.Y.) went 3-4 from deep for nine points, leading a Cadet second unit that outscored the Colby-Sawyer bench by a 22-5 margin.
The loss drops Norwich to 7-14 this year and 2-7 within the GNAC. With their postseason hopes effectively squashed, Norwich will look to end the season on a positive note over their final three contests. They'll hit the road for their next date, a Saturday afternoon matchup with Lasell, before returning home on February 12th and 16th to wrap up their season.