Women’s Basketball Team Keeps Conference Tourney Hopes Alive

NEW PALTZ, NY – — The SUNY New Paltz women’s basketball team kept its hopes of qualifying for next week’s conference tournament alive with a 74-63 win over Potsdam this evening at Elting Gymnasium.

The win improves the Hawks record to 9-15 overall and 4-11 in the conference. New Paltz began play this weekend needing a win over Potsdam and a win over Plattsburgh tommorrow (2:00 p.m.), coupled with two losses by Fredonia, to earn the eighth and final spot in next week’s SUNYAC Tournament. The Hawks achieved half of the equation this evening with Fredonia falling at home to first place Geneseo, 72-53. The Blue Devils, who with a win tomorrow will claim the final spot, travel to Cortland tomorrow to take on the Red Dragons at 2:00 p.m.

New Paltz placed five players in double figures and made 11 three-point field goals while connecting on 61 percent of their attempts from behind the arc. Junior forward Maura McShane (East Rockaway, NY) led New Paltz with 16 points, including four three-point baskets. Freshman Colleen Kelly (Hyde Park, NY) added 14 points on four-of-five shooting from three point range

Trailing 13-5 seven minutes into the game, the Hawks used a 19-6 run to take a 24-19 lead at the six-minute mark. McShane and Kelly keyed the first half surge, combining for 20 of New Paltz’s 33-first half points. McShane also drained a three-pointer as time expired in the first half, giving the Hawks a 33-25 lead at the break. McShane’s trifecta capped a 7-of-11 shooting performance from three-point range by New Paltz in the first 20 minutes.

Potsdam (2-22, 1-14) was led by sophomore guard Kate Sullivan (North Lawrence, NY) who had 18 points and four rebounds. The Bears went five minutes without a field goal midway through the second half as New Paltz built its lead to double figures with five minutes remaining.