by Kevin McCaskill Jr.
2/2/23 * 2:00 PM
(AMHERST, MA) - Yesterday, at the Mullins Center, the UMass Minutewomen hosted the Richmond Spiders. This home game was designated as a #Play4Kay game. #Play4Kay honors all women and girls who have gone through cancer and all the families that have endured their loved ones going through cancer. Richmond’s jerseys were all pink; UMass had white jerseys with pink letters and numbers.
UMass struggled on offense for the entire first half. They forced some shots. The shots they did get out of their offense were missed. On the other end, Richmond’s Addie Budnik and Grace Townsend played very well in the first half. Budnik hit multiple threes; Townsend controlled the pace of the game. She also got in the lane and scored a few baskets. UMass’ defense was having problems, again, defending swing passes across the court. The Richmond shooter was wide open with a Minutewomen getting over to her with a late contest.
Richmond led at halftime 37-31.
Richmond came out in the 3rd quarter and maintained their control of the game. The Minutewomen made a series of baskets late in third to pull closer, capped by a Sam Breen turnaround jumper in the lane. Richmond was ahead by one point, 52-51.
Early in the fourth quarter, UMass Forward Makennah White made a layup, with an assist from Breen, that gave UMass their first lead since the first quarter. White made another another basket in the paint, this time assisted by Sydney Taylor. UMass Guard Destiny Philoxy hit a three that put UMass up 58-52.
Richmond didn’t go away. They made a few baskets to keep pace and they tried to foul the Minutewomen and test their FT making. The Minutewomen passed the test and held on for the victory down the stretch 73-69.
Breen scored 21 points and 9 rebounds. White had a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Ber’Nyah Mayo scored 14 points.
Budnik scored a game-high 27 points, hitting seven 3s. Maggie Doogan, Grace Townsend and Siobhan Ryan scored 11 points each.
After the game, Minutewomen HC Tory Verdi
said he was “extremely proud of their effort”. “I thought Makennah White was really good…her energy, her effort…I thought she was great”.
UMass travels south to Philadelphia, PA for a Saturday afternoon matchup against La Salle. The game starts @ 2 PM on ESPN+.