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vs. Mizzou

11/27/2021 | 3:30 PM

NEW YORK – Columbia went head-to-head with Stony Brook in a battle between two 5-0 NCAA women’s basketball teams Wednesday afternoon, but it was the Seawolves that won the fourth quarter and walked away with the win, 91-82, from Schiller Court at Levien Gymnasium.

Trailing by seven midway through the third quarter, Columbia went on a 8-1 run to tie things up with all of the scoring provided by Abbey Hsu. The returning All-Ivy sophomore drained a triple, hit a running floater and brought the home crowd to its feet with another three that pulled the Lions level for the first time since the first quarter. Hsu would hit another game-tying triple on her next attempt before a buzzer-beating lay-in from Carly Rivera brought the game into the fourth quarter all square, 59-59.

Columbia briefly seized the lead when Sienna Durr knocked down a pair of free throws 15 seconds into the final frame, but that would be the last time the Lions would see it. Stony Brook scored the next seven points and outscored Columbia 32-21 the rest of the way to walk out on top.

“Stony Brook is a really good team with a lot of experienced players that do what they do well,” Columbia head coach Megan Griffith said. “I think we have a ton to learn. This is going to be some really good game film for us to go back and review … because we have a lot of great opportunities in front of us, starting with Mizzou on Saturday. Again, a team like [Stony Brook] at this juncture in the season is going to teach you more so that you’re ready for January, February and March when it matters.”

Reigning Ivy League Player of the Week Kaitlyn Davis ended the day as the leading scorer with a game- and career-high 23 points. The 6-foot tweener was 9-of-16 from the floor and stuffed the stat sheet for the third time this season by adding six rebounds, four assists, two steals and a block. Hsu matched her season-high of 22 points, scoring 13 of them during that third-quarter run. They were joined in double figures by 11 from Durr and 10 apiece from Rivera and Jaida Patrick.

For Stony Brook, Gigi Gonzalez drew nine fouls and hit 14-of-16 at the charity stripe on her way to a team-high 21 points. India Pagan was 8-of-9 from the floor to score 16, while Leighah-Amori Wool (11), Mckenzi Bushee (11) and Nairmar Vargas-Reyes (10) all also reached double figures. Bushee had five of the team’s 16 offensive rebounds, which helped the Seawolves end the game with a 28-14 advantage in second-chance points.

The contest between the two mid-major unbeatens lived up to the billing. Entering the day, Columbia (5-1) and Stony Brook (6-0) were two of just 12 teams in the nation that were 5-0 or better, and they both had notable power conference wins to the credit. The Lions had defeated Clemson and Georgetown on the road, while Stony Brook had earned wins over Rutgers and St. John’s.

Columbia created the game’s first bit of separation with a 12-6 start that saw them hit five of their first seven shots, including four in a row. Davis had five early points.

Stony Brook used the media timeout to regroup and outscored the Lions 9-0 the rest of the quarter. Veronica Charles’ layup at the buzzer put them ahead 15-12.

The Lions put an end to a scoreless drought of more than four minutes when Davis found Hsu inside just 10 seconds into the second quarter, but Stony Brook kept on pushing. Three straight buckets extended the run to 15-2 and gave the Seawolves a 21-14 lead.

A back-and-forth remainder of the half saw the Lions trailing by four at the break. Both teams were shooting 50 percent or better from the field, but Columbia had left a lot of points on the foul line, missing eight of its first 11 free throw attempts.

Despite trailing most of the way, the Lions were always within striking distance. Hsu’s run at the end of the third quarter provided for some momentum heading to the fourth, but Columbia was unable to answer the bell one more time late and suffered its first loss of the season.

Columbia heads to the Christmas City Classic, hosted by Lehigh, for games on Saturday and Sunday. The Lions will take on another undefeated team, Missouri (5-0), on Saturday at 3:30 p.m., followed by either Rider or the host Mountain Hawks on Sunday.

For the latest on the Columbia women’s basketball, follow @CULionsWBB on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, or on the web at GoColumbiaLions.com.

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