After stumbling to a 0-2 start, the women’s basketball team bounced back to win its first game of the season against Canisius 59-50, giving head coach Aaron Roussell his first win as Bison head coach. On Nov. 21, the Orange and Blue carried that momentum back home, where they defeated Niagara 77-69, behind Alyssa Dunn’s ’13 career-high 23 points.
The Bison outscored Niagara 36-20 in the first half. Lindsay Horbatuck ’13 showed her balanced attack once again, scoring 10 points and pulling down eight rebounds in the half. The Orange and Blue got contributions from many members of the team during a 15-4 run that pushed the lead to 12 with 6:38 left in the half. Shelby Romine ’14 dished one of her four assists to Dunn who scored a lay-up to build the lead to 20. The Bison shot 41.2 percent (14-34) from the field to carry a double-digit lead into halftime.
“Something that has been very evident in our last three games is our team’s work ethic. Every night that we go out on the court, we vow to outwork and outhustle our opponents,” Horbatuck said.
In the second half, Niagara fought back to eventually cut the lead down to four with 3:13 left in the game. This arose from a 25-9 run that saw the Purple Eagles nail five three-pointers. It would not be enough to hold down the Bison, as Romine and Dunn combined for 14 of the last 15 points for the Orange and Blue to seal the win.
Despite the late Niagara run, the Bison never trailed in the game. Their 77 points is the most they have scored since Feb. 2011. Dunn also had a career-high six assists to go along with her 23 points and went a perfect 3-3 from three-point range and 8-8 from the free throw line, while Horbatuck had a double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds.
“During the last three games, I think we really came out strongly as a team. Even when we went through rough spots, we persevered and turned things around quickly. Above all else, we never doubted that we could win,” Dunn said.
Following the win, the Bison bested Morgan State 72-64 in Baltimore, putting them over .500 for the first time since the 2008-2009 season.
The game got off to an early start when a Morgan State technical foul led to a free throw by Romine right before the opening seconds of the game. A pair of free throws by Horbatuck capped a 9-0 start for the Bison. The Orange and Blue led for most of the first half, but the Bears eventually regained a one-point lead at the break.
Even with a 4:03 field goal drought in the second half, Sheaira Jones ’16 scored a lay-up to take the lead that the Bison never relinquished to pick up a win against the Bears. Dunn, Romine and Felicia Mgbada ’13 each scored in double figures, while Audrey Dotson ’15 and Horbatuck each had nine points to go along with a combined 20 rebounds. The Bison out-rebounded the Bears 53-33.
“One of the little things includes rebounding, which I think my team has excelled at recently. Getting offensive boards turns into second chance opportunities and getting defensive boards turns into transition which is a huge part of our offensive game,” Horbatuck said.
The Bison continued their early season dominance with a fourth straight win over Mount St. Mary’s. Dunn and Romine each finished with 11 points, while Jones had a near double-double with nine points and 10 rebounds. The Bison led by 10 at halftime, a lead that would be cut down to two in the second half, but Dunn and Katherine Harris ’15 made two key three-pointers down the stretch that lifted the Bison to the 55-43 win.
The Bison look to extend their win streak, as they face Buffalo tomorrow at 7 p.m. in Davis Gym, followed by a match-up at Penn on Dec. 3.