WALTHAM, Mass. – Bentley University senior co-captain Jane White (Amherst, N.H./Souhegan HS) broke a 54-all tie with a scoop shot in the lane with 53.8 seconds left as part of a game-ending 9-2 run that gave the Falcons a come-from-behind 60-56 win over Southern Connecticut State in Northeast-10 Conference women's basketball Saturday afternoon at the Dana Center.
With its 11th win in its last 12 games, Bentley maintained a two-game lead in the NE-10's Northeast Division as the Falcons improved to 17-3 overall and 11-3 NE-10. The Owls, who led by as many as 12 in the second quarter, dropped to 14-8 overall and 7-7 conference.
Sophomore guard Lauren Green (Damascus, Md./Damascus HS) led Bentley with 14 points, freshman guard Megan Lewis (Sevenoaks, England) followed with 13 points and a career-best 13 rebounds, and White tied her season-high with 11 points.
Bentley, after leading by as many as five early in the fourth, found itself down 54-51 with 3:08 to play after a 14-6 Owl run. Included were six points by senior forward Jackie Beathea (Annandale, Va.), who led Southern with 14 points and 14 rebounds.
It remained that way until Lewis drained a game-tying three from the right wing with 1:36, evening the score for the sixth time. White followed with a steal before scoring netting her go-ahead basket.
Two Lewis free throws, a White steal and one of two from the line by White in the final 20 seconds locked up the outcome.
This one turned around in the final five minutes of the first half as Bentley used a 13-2 burst to reduce a 12-point deficit to one, 28-27. The run began with ten unanswered on a drive by Green, a three from the right win by White, a fast-break finished by freshman forward Victoria Lux (Arundel, Maine/ Thornton Academy) and a three-point play by Lux.
Sophomore guard Macchi Smith (Los Angeles, Calif./Windward School) came up with a steal with about two seconds left in the half and quickly found junior All-Conference forward Jen Gemma (Milton/Fontbonne Academy), who drained a three to beat the buzzer.
Bentley struggled offensively through much of the half, scoring only seven points in the opening quarter due to the combination of 18 percent shooting and seven turnovers.
The Falcon momentum carried over into the third with a 7-2 spurt that included a White triple putting the home team in front, 34-30. It was a two-point Bentley lead going into the fourth and Green made it 45-40 with a three from the left wing 56 seconds into the final stanza.
White and Lewis, in addition to scoring in double figures, also had three steals apiece for the Falcons. Gemma was limited to nine points but helped with ten rebounds. Beathea was one of four Owls to score in doubles and Division II's leading rebounder complemented her double-double with three blocks.
Southern shot better overall, but Bentley made three more triples (6-3), three more free throws (12-9) and had three more rebounds (41-38).
Next up for the Falcons is a trip to Stonehill College for a 5:30 encounter Wednesday evening.