LANCASTER, Pa. – Suffocating defense and the one-two punch of senior Libby Lannon and freshman Lydia Konstanzer has the Ursinus College women's basketball team on a roll at the right time, a three-game winning streak now on the Bears' side after a dominating 53-35 win at Franklin & Marshall on Wednesday.
Four days removed from holding Johns Hopkins to 24-percent shooting, Ursinus (11-10, 9-7) limited the Diplomats (8-11, 6-8) to a paltry 23.0 percent (14 for 61) and controlled the boards (51-39) to gain a split of the season series and post a critical Centennial Conference victory. With the result, the Bears are in sole possession of fifth place in the league standings with four contests remaining, a half-game clear of McDaniel and the Blue Jays.
Lannon hit double figures for the fourth straight game, netting a game-high 15 points to go with seven rebounds, six assists, and three steals, while Konstanzer registered another double-double with 14 points and 14 rebounds. Erica Brown led F&M with 15 points.
Ursinus scored the game's first four points and led wire to wire. The Bears held the home side to just six points in each of the first two quarters to take a 23-12 lead into halftime behind 10 points from Konstanzer.
The Diplomats made one push, a 10-0 run capped by a Haley Pilone 3-pointer that trimmed the Bears' advantage to 32-26 at the 3:20 mark of the third. Sophomore Brielle Clarke teamed with Lannon to stop the momentum, the former draining back-to-back jumpers and the latter netting two straight lay-ups to push the advantage out to 40-27 after three quarters. Ursinus was never threatened after that.
The Bears held F&M to just 3 for 21 (14.3 percent) from behind the 3-point line. Only five Diplomats scored, as Brown needed 18 shots to get her 15 points and no one else getting more than six.
Junior Rachel Guy finished with nine points for Ursinus, while sophomore Kaci McNeave had five points, five rebounds, and three assists without a turnover. The Bears handed out 12 helpers and committed only 10 turnovers. Freshman Toni Suler played a major role on the backboards, ripping down 11 rebounds and adding a pair of blocks to her CC-leading total.
Winners of three straight for the first time this season, the Bears go for four against Washington College on Saturday, February 4.