By Kevin Carroll -- SPORTS EDITOR In a rematch of what was perhaps the Hofstra women’s basketball team’s best performance of the season, the Pride couldn’t pull off a second win this season over the College of William & Mary, this time losing to the Tribe by a 63-53 score on Sunday afternoon at Kaplan Arena.
These two teams squared off just nine days prior, in a contest where the Pride played a fantastic 40 minutes en route to a 65-54 victory at the Mack Sports Complex. This time, the roles were reversed, with William & Mary owning the home-court advantage, and coming away with a ten-point victory.
This was the Pride’s second game of the weekend without star forward Ashunae Durant, who leads the team in both scoring and rebounding. In addition, senior guard Aleana Leon was limited after an injury took her out of Friday’s game at James Madison University, and could only play 20 minutes off the bench against the Tribe.
In that game Friday, Hofstra head coach Krista Kilburn-Steveskey tried to use a lot of Hofstra’s reserves to combat the injuries that kept two of her best players on the sidelines. On Sunday, Kilburn-Steveskey stuck with a much tighter rotation, only going with seven players.
Much of the time, point guards Boogie Brozoski and E’Lexus Davis shared the floor, a system that Hofstra has employed in the past, with guards like Darius Faulk and Krystal Luciano.
Davis started in place of Leon, her first time back in the starting lineup since New Year’s Eve. The sophomore performed capably, scoring 11 points and pulling down five rebounds. Her partner in the backcourt, Brozoski, led the Pride with 16 points, including a pair of three-pointers.
In the post, Marianne Kalin had an impressive afternoon, scoring eight points, grabbing seven boards and blocking five shots. Like in the two teams’ previous matchup, she did an excellent job locking down the Tribe’s Abby Rendle, holding her scoreless.
But where Rendle struggled in the low post, the Tribe’s shooting prowess was on full display. William & Mary shot 41 percent from the floor, and 43 percent from deep, knocking down a total of seven three-pointers.
Four of those three-balls came off the hot hand of Bianca Boggs, the Tribe’s leading scorer. Boggs was held in relative check the last time these teams squared off, but she was feeling it on Sunday, dropping a game-high 24 points, while also grabbing a game-high eight rebounds.
She was one of four members of the Tribe in double-figures, along with Jenna Green, Victoria Reynolds and Nari Garner, with Garner knocking down a trio of three-pointers herself.
William & Mary is one of the most prolific scoring offenses in the CAA, and the Pride just didn’t have the defensive presence on Sunday to keep their scorers from producing. Despite holding a lead after the first quarter, Hofstra couldn’t match the offensive firepower that their counterparts brought to the court, leading to their third straight loss, all by double-digits.
The Pride dropped to 10-12 on the season, and 4-6 in the CAA. William & Mary improved to 14-6 and 5-4 in conference action.
Hofstra returns home on Friday, Feb. 4 to take on UNC-Wilmington at 7 p.m.