Vermont freshman guard Hayley Robertson dribbled into a 3-point attempt between two Stony Brook defenders, which rimmed out, giving the Seawolves a last chance at cutting into the Catamounts’ four-point lead with 20 seconds to go.
But junior guard Kylie Butler snatched the offensive rebound for Vermont and put the game out of reach at the free-throw line. Stony Brook fell 44-37 in Sunday’s road game, making it five straight losses to end its regular season.
With the loss, Stony Brook falls to 8-8 in America East Conference play. Vermont improved to 4-12 in the conference season. Despite the loss, Stony Brook clinched the No. 3 seed in the America East Playoffs at Binghamton University next season.
It has been a struggle on offense of late for the Seawolves, as the team failed to score 50 points in its fourth consecutive contest. On Sunday, Stony Brook scored just 37 points and shot 24.5 percent from the field. Head coach Caroline McCombs’s squad also went 2-for-18 on 3-pointers. Stony Brook only scored 11 points in the second half and did not score in the final 8:14 of the fourth quarter.
Vermont did not shoot with much more success, but it did enough to secure the win behind a balanced effort. Leading the way for the home team was freshman forward Lauren Handy with 10 points, while Robertson
Senior guard Kylie Atwood and sophomore guard Sydney Smith each scored eight points. The Catamounts outshot the Seawolves from the field by nearly 10 percentage points and took the rebounding battle by a slim margin.
Junior guard Christa Scognamiglio led Stony Brook in scoring with 11 points, followed by freshman forward Ogechi Anyagaligbo with 10.
Anyagaligbo added 11 rebounds in the game, as the first-year standout notched her sixth double-double of the season. Senior forward Brittany Snow put up just four points in her final regular season game as a Seawolf, shooting 0-for-6 from the field.
The first half was a tightly contested one, with Stony Brook going up four at one point and never falling behind by more than six. The game was knotted after one quarter and the Seawolves trailed by just three at halftime.
Scognamiglio scored all 11 over her points in the first half, and Anyagaligbo scored eight of her 10 in the opening two quarters.
Stony Brook, a No. 3 seed in the America East Playoffs, will face off against No. 6 Hartford on Saturday at the Binghamton University Events Center, the site of the tournament’s first two rounds.
The Seawolves won both of their games against the Hawks this season. The first match-up was a 23-point blowout at Island Federal Credit Union Arena, the latter a three-point victory at Hartford.
The Hawks are led by sophomore forward Darby Lee, who is averaging a team-best 10.9 points per game in conference play.
“We just have to keep sticking together and keep getting better every single day, that’s the most important thing for us,” Snow said of the tournament. “We just have to keep sticking together and keep fighting.”
Stony Brook will look to fare better than it did in the America East Playoffs last season, where the Seawolves were upset in the first round by the UMBC Retrievers.
To find success this season, Stony Brook will need to turn around its recent woes. McCombs’s team has lost five games in a row and eight of its last 11 contests.