Bowdoin defeats Bates women in NESCAC Finals, 68-58
LEWISTON, Maine — The Bates College women’s basketball team came up short in its quest for a NESCAC championship on Sunday, as Bowdoin outscored the Bobcats 49-32 in the second half to win its sixth consecutive conference title.
Sophomore Marisa Berne scored 18 points and junior Julia Loonin added 17, all in the second half, to lead four players in double figures for the Polar Bears (24-2), who snapped Bates’ 23-game home win streak.
Sophomore Sarah Barton led Bates (19-8) with 15 points and seven assists, while junior Meg Coffin, who struggled with foul trouble all game long, had 12 points and 12 rebounds.
It was the fourth straight year Bowdoin has defeated Bates for the conference championship, but the first time it has happened on Bates’ home floor.
Bates jumped out to a 10-0 lead with 3-pointers by Barton and Jackie Powers, and led by as many as 11 (24-13) with 3:42 to play in the first half, as the Polar Bears had the worst of both teams’ struggles shooting, 8-for-34 (23.5 percent) to Bates’ 9-for-25 (36.0 percent).
But Bowdoin began to claw back late in the half and gained significant momentum by the time senior Justine Pouravelis drove for a layup and was fouled by senior Annie Whiting with 0.3 seconds left on the clock, shrinking Bates’ lead to 26-19 at the half.
The Polar Bears wasted little time getting into a groove that would last for the entirety of the second half. Loonin canned a three and drove for a layup to cut the deficit to 28-26.
After Coffin converted underneath off an inbounds pass from Barton, Berne nailed one of her four threes from the corner, on a kickout from Pouravelis to make it 30-29.
Coffin was whistled for her fourth foul with 14 minutes left in the game, and seconds later Eileen Flaherty hit a layup for Bowdoin’s first lead at 31-30.
Flaherty then converted a pair of free throws and answered Barton’s floater in the lane with a three-point play to make it 36-32. Kyla Decato banked in a 3-pointer for Bates, but Berne answered right back with a three of her own.
Coffin re-entered the game with 9:20 left and and hit a bank shot to make it 45-41 Bowdoin, and Barton followed with a three-pointer over the top of Bowdoin’s zone defense to close the gap to 45-44, prompting a Bowdoin timeout with 8:21 to play.
But Loonin popped in a three out of the timeout, and after both teams went scoreless for two minutes, first-year Alexa Kaubris nailed a three from the right wing to give the Polar Bears a seven-point cushion at 53-46.
A foul shot by Flaherty, who scored 10 of her 14 points in the second half, was followed by a three-point play by Loonin, giving Bowdoin a comfortable 57-46 edge with three minutes to go.
Pouravelis scored 10 points and had a team-high 11 rebounds and three steals for Bowdoin, while Berne also had a double-double with 10 boards. Flaherty had nine rebounds, while Loonin had five to go with a team-high four assists.
Sophomore Matia Kostakis had eight points and nine rebounds for Bates. Powers added eight points and three assists, and Decato had six points and five boards off the bench.
Bowdoin shot 54.8 percent (17-for-31) from the floor in the second half, while Bates shot 13-for-37 (35.1 percent).
Coffin had 37 rebounds over three games in the tournament, breaking the tournament record of 30 held by former teammate Olivia Zurek ’05.
BOWDOIN COLLEGE 68, BATES COLLEGE 58
BOWDOIN COLLEGE (24-2)
Marisa Berne 6-19 2-2 18; Julia Loonin 6-13 3-4 17; Eileen Flaherty 5-16 4-7 14; Justine Pouravelis 5-7 0-1 10; Alexa Kaubris 2-2 2-2 7; Jill Anelauskas 1-4 0-0 2; Katie Cummings 0-4 0-0 0. Totals 25-65 11-16 68.
BATES COLLEGE (19-8)
Sarah Barton 5-13 2-2 15; Meg Coffin 6-11 0-3 12; Matia Kostakis 3-13 2-2 8; Jackie Powers 3-7 1-1 8; Kyla Decato 2-3 1-1 6; Val Beckwith 1-6 3-4 5; Katie Franklin 1-4 0-0 2; Annie Whiting 1-4 0-0 2; Maggie Fitzgerald 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 22-62 9-13 58.
Bowdoin College…………… 19 49 - 68
Bates College…………….. 26 32 - 58
3-point goals-Bowdoin College 7-21 (Marisa Berne 4-9; Julia Loonin 2-8; Alexa Kaubris 1-1; Katie Cummings 0-2; Eileen Flaherty 0-1), Bates College 5-18 (Sarah Barton 3-9; Kyla Decato 1-2; Jackie Powers 1-2; Annie Whiting 0-2; Maggie Fitzgerald 0-1; Matia Kostakis 0-2). Fouled out–Bowdoin College-None, Bates College-Jackie Powers. Rebounds-Bowdoin College 47 (Justine Pouravelis 11), Bates College 40 (Meg Coffin 12). Assists-Bowdoin College 14 (Julia Loonin 5), Bates College 13 (Sarah Barton 7). Total fouls-Bowdoin College 11, Bates College 16. A-900