Bears women's basketball team drop season opener
UTICA, N.Y.- The SUNY Potsdam women’s basketball team fell in their season opener to Utica 60-49. Senior Katie McGee recorded a double-double with 22 rebounds and 10 points and knocked down three of four from the three point line to lead the Pioneers.
Utica jumped out early in the first half with a 19-8 lead before a timeout was called by Potsdam Head Coach Tara Ruckh. The Bears responded with aggressive defense and held the Pioneers to only eight points over the final 9:17 and cut the deficit to 27-21 at the break. The Bears forced 12 first half turnovers and freshman Bailey Weigel grabbed seven of her game-high 13 rebounds in the first half. Sophomore Sophie Parks and senior Kaley Arsenault shot a combined 6-9 from the field in the half.The second half featured runs from both teams. Potsdam scored the half’s first seven points thanks to sophomore Jessica Kouzan knocking down a three pointer and a jumper from the wing on back to back possessions. Arsenault’s layup gave Potsdam a one point lead. Utica would take back the lead with a 10-4 run of their own but Kouzan’s jumper with 7:34 left would cut the Utica lead to 47-44. However, Utica would respond with 10 unanswered points and pull away over the next six minutes to pull away.
Utica shot 44 percent from the floor for the game and was led by McGee’s double-double. Sam Stayer and Alyssa Filkins each scored 13 points in the game.
Weigel would finish the game with seven points, 13 rebounds and six assists in her college debut. Parks led the balanced offense with 10 points and five Bears scored seven or more points. Potsdam shot 34 percent from the field but outrebounded Utica 43-36.
“Overall, I’m pleased with the balanced scoring and we did a good job on the glass,” said Ruckh. “This was a good first game for us and had to deal with their pressure. I am pleased with where we’re at but disappointed we didn’t get a win. We will continue to get better.”
The Bears return to action this Friday night at 6 p.m. in the SUNY Canton Tournament. Potsdam will take on Morrisville on the opening night before facing the host Kangaroos on Saturday at 2 p.m.