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Women’s Hoop: Vermont Falls at UMBC

Courtesy Vermont Sports Information

BALTIMORE, MD. — Vermont’s Kayla Burchill scored a career-high 27 points and matched her career best with six 3-pointers, but the UMBC Retrievers pulled out a 77-62 victory at the RAC on Sunday afternoon in America East women’s basketball action.

UMBC improves to 3-22 overall and 2-11 in America East. Vermont falls to 6-19 on the year and 3-9 in league play.

In a game that saw 16 lead changes and 10 ties, the Retrievers were able to take control of the contest in the final four minutes.  Burchill made a pair of free throws to give UVM a 55-54 lead with 4:15 remaining, but three-point play by Liz McNaughton on UMBC’s next possession sparked a 23-7 run by the Retrievers that closed the game and lifted them to the victory.

Vermont tried to extend the game by fouling, but UMBC took advantage and went 18-for-21 from the stripe in the closing minutes and were 30-for-26 from the line for the game.

UMBC took a 10-2 lead to open the game, but the Catamounts responded with a 10-0 run, fueled by seven points from Burchill, to take a 12-10 lead.  The Catamounts pushed their lead to five, UVM’s largest of the game, on a 3-pointer by Jordan Eisler.

UMBC answered with six straight points to regain the lead, 16-15, at the 8:40 mark. The teams traded baskets and the lead the rest of the half, but a 3-pointer by Kristina White with 52 seconds left gave Vermont a 29-27 lead at the half.

Taylor McCarley scored a team-high 18 points as all five starters reached double figures for UMBC.

UMBC shot 56.1 percent from the field, while the Catamounts shot 31.4 percent from the floor for the game.  UVM matched its season high with 11 3-pointers and out rebounded the Retrievers 37-35 and 18-3 on the offensive glass.  UMBC finished the game with a 30-for-36 effort from the foul line.

“I was really proud of the effort given the circumstances to get down here to play the game.  I thought we played really hard. We missed some shots and didn’t get to the free throw line like we needed to. Kayla Burchill was tremendous tonight. I was proud of the way she is taking over and put the team on her back.  Kylie Atwood played well tonight, keeping us organized, attacking and distributing the ball.  Bottom line a couple of the balls didn’t bounce our way towards the end, they made some key buckets and when we had to start fouling they took the lead for good from there. We were very close and we fought the whole way,” said Vermont head coach Lori Gear McBride.

Vermont hosts New Hampshire on Wednesday (Feb. 19) at 7 p.m. Tickets are available online at UVMathletics.com/tickets, in person at the UVM Athletic Ticket Office in Patrick Gymnasium (M-F: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.), via the phone at 802-656-4410, or in person one hour before tipoff in the Patrick Gymnasium Lobby.

The game can be seen online via CatamounTV.com.

NOTES: Today’s game was originally scheduled for Saturday, but due to weather conditions, Vermont could not get to Baltimore in time … Kayla Burchill and Kylie Butler have scored 27 points in consecutive games for the Catamounts … Butler had a career-high 27 points at UMass Lowell on Wednesday … Burchill’s six 3-pointers matched her career high, when she made six 3-pointers versus No. 15 Georgetown (12/29/11) … UVM also made 11 3-pointers against Canisius earlier this season (12/16/13) … Burchill is averaging 15.3 points per game in league play and shooting better than 40 percent from the field and 3-point range.