NEW LONDON, Conn. – The Newbury College women's basketball team used a second-half surge to pull out a 77-63 victory at Mitchell College on Saturday afternoon at the Yarnall Athletic Center.
The Nighthawks (13-10 overall, 11-6 NECC) took control behind a 14-2 run that left them with a 59-48 lead with 10:20 remaining in the contest. Morganna Machado finished with a team-high 18 points on 7-for-12 shooting while Catherine O'Connell posted 17 points, 16 rebounds, five assists, two blocks and two steals in the win. Mitchell freshman Sheanna James led all scorers with 21 points and also had six boards and six steals.
Neither side led by more than four points in a competitive first half that featured six ties and 11 lead changes. The Mariners (6-16 overall, 5-11 NECC) shot 48 percent from the floor in the stanza and took a 37-34 lead into the halftime break. Senior Bianca Young scored all 13 of her points in the first half to pace Mitchell while Machado had 11 at intermission.
The opening minutes of the second half mimicked the previous period, as Newbury took the lead behind baskets by Katie Haney and Kendra Bannister. The lead then changed hands four more times before a lay-up by O'Connell put the Nighthawks in front for good with 13:57 to play. The basket sparked a 14-2 run over a 3:37 stretch as Newbury pulled away. Shayla White scored seven of her 12 points during the spurt and capped the run with a lay-up that made it 59-48 with 10:20 to go.
Mitchell never recovered and shot just 25 percent in the second half. Newbury led by as many as 19 points and shot 46 percent in the period to finish at 41 percent for the game. The Nighthawks dominated the paint, outscoring the Mariners 32-16 while holding a 55-39 edge on the glass. O'Connell pulled down seven boards on the offensive end alone while Machado finished one rebound short of a double-double.
Young finished with a game- and career-high 17 rebounds to go along with her 13 points. Freshman Hannah Smith also scored in double figures with 11 points and added seven rebounds.
Mitchell will next host Bay Path College on Tuesday, February 14 at 7 p.m.