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Bearcats can't handle first place Great Danes

VESTAL, N.Y. Shereesha Richards finished with 17 points and 10 rebounds, leading first-place Albany (15-3, 5-0 AE) to a 66-36 win over Binghamton (4-14, 1-4 AE) in an America East womens basketball game on Monday night at the Events Center. The loss, which was the Bearcats third straight setback, came against a team that is also the two-time defending conference champion.

Richards, who came into the game leading the America East in points (23.0) and rebounds (11.1), ran into foul trouble in the first half and had only two points. In the second half, however, she scored 15 points in only 14 minutes of action.

The Great Danes controlled the battle of the boards, outrebounding the Bearcats 57-29. Tammy Phillip grabbed a game-high 16 rebounds alone. Albany also recorded 16 steals and scored 26 points off of Binghamton turnovers.

Its a tough loss but Albany is a very good team, head coach Nicole Scholl said. I thought our players battled hard for 40 minutes but its unfortunate that we missed all those shots when we did.

Binghamton missed on its first 15 field goal attempts and fell behind 21-9 with 7:38 left in the first half. At the free throw line, however, the Bearcats went 9-for-10 during that span.

Senior guard Stephanie Jensen broke the drought by hitting back-to-back three-point field goals. Those shots catapulted a 10-2 run that pulled Binghamton to within 23-19 with 4:21 left in the first half.

Albany, however, responded with a 9-0 run to go up 32-19 at the break. Richards was on the bench during that stretch but Cassandra Edwards had four of the Great Dane points.

The Great Danes continued their run in the first 4:43 of the second half, reeling of another nine straight points to go up 41-19. Richards was back in the game and had six of her points during that span.
In the final seven of regulation, Jessica Fequiere drained a pair of three pointers as the Great Danes closed the game on a 14-6 run.

Sophomore forward Morgan Murphy tied a career-high with 16 points. She went 10-of-14 from the free throw line and also finished with seven rebounds. Her previous 16-point game came against UNLV on Dec. 2, 2012.

NOTES: Richards and Murphy were the America East Players of the Game  junior guard Gintare Surdokaite made her first career start against Albany.

(Courtesy: BU Athletics)

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