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Women's basketball wipes out Husson in second half

LEWISTON, Maine -- The Bates College women's basketball team shrugged off a nine-point deficit late in the first half to take a 25-24 lead at the break, then routed the visiting Husson University Eagles 58-27 in the second half for an 83-51 non-conference win on Tuesday evening.

Read Kalle Oakes' story on the game from the Lewiston Sun Journal.

Senior Annie Burns (Topsfield, Mass.) led the Bobcats (1-1) with a career-high-tying 13 assists, nine of them in the second half, to go with six steals, pacing an offense that featured three double-digit scorers. Sophomore Meredith Kelly (Cohasset, Mass.) scored a game-high 17 points on 8-14 shooting and tied for the team lead with six rebounds, while blocking three shots. Junior Allie Beaulieu (Swampscott, Mass.) netted 15 points and Brianna Hawkins added 13. Seniors Lauren Dobish (Chambersburg, Pa.) and Burns collected seven and six steals, respectively -- a career-high total for Dobish.

Stephanie Comstock led the Eagles (0-3) with 14 points and eight boards. Kelli Murray chipped in nine points and eight rebounds, and Brianna Hanscom added nine points and five assists.

After being shooting 33.3% from the floor and getting outrebounded 22-21 in the first half, the Bobcats made 25 of 38 shots in the second half (65.8%) and outrebounded the Eagles 23-10, as Beaulieu, Hawkins and Kelly combined for 30 points in the period. Both Hawkins and Kelly hit rare three-pointers during the period -- Kelly made her first career three-point attempt on a setup by Burns, while Hawkins is now 2-for-2 from behind the arc this season.

A pair of free throws by Hanscom had Husson on top 20-11 with 5:58 left in the first half. But a jumper by junior Taryn O'Connell (Georgetown, Mass.) with 4:09 left kicked off a 12-3 run by the Bobcats to finish out the half. Burns scored her lone basket of the game and handed out three assists in the spurt, including on first-year Allaina Murphy's (Poland Spring, Maine) three-point play with three seconds left. She also made the steal that led to a fast-break layup by Beaulieu on a no-look dish by Dobish, which cut Husson's lead to 21-19 with 2:54 left.

Bates picked up where it left off in the second half, starting the period with an 11-4 run that was capped by Hawkins' three from the top of the key, which made it 36-28 with 17:26 left. Burns passed out four more assists in the 2:34 span.

A steal and a layup by Husson senior Amanda Gifford cut Bates' lead to 36-33 with 15:52 left in the game, but Kelly answered with three unanswered buckets, and Dobish set up a three by Beaulieu to make it 45-33 with 13:24 to go. A swarming Bates defense held Husson scoreless while tallying 18 unanswered points from 15:52 until the 10:00 mark. The Eagles committed five turnovers and missed 11 straight shots during the decisive stretch.

Sophomore center Callie Cramer (Dedham, Mass.) led the way over the final six minutes of the game, hitting all three of her shots for six points to go with four rebounds and two blocked shots.

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