Women’s Basketball Back In The Win Column

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Ryan Jones, Editor-in-Chief

Central Connecticut women’s basketball defeated Bryant Tuesday for the team’s first victory since December. The Blue Devils defended their home court against Bryant despite missing three key veterans from the lineup.

Central Connecticut again played without Ashley Berube, Emma McCamus and Tiffany Slicklein. Berube and McCamus were the team’s leading scorers before going down to injury and Slicklein was third on the team in rebounds, assists and blocks per game.

Because of injuries, Central Connecticut has had four different iterations of the starting lineup played this season.

Despite being without key contributors again, the Blue Devils were still able to keep the ball moving and had three players score in double figures Tuesday. Junior guard Forever Toppin led all scorers in the game with 14 points.

Central Connecticut had a narrow three point lead heading into the half despite shooting worse from the floor in both quarters. The game sat tied until Toppin knocked down a deep three with three seconds left in the half.

While Toppin and the rest of the Blue Devils were able to do their part offensively, CCSU’s defense was ultimately the deciding factor in the victory.

Bryant’s final score of 53 is the lowest anyone has scored on Central all season. The Blue Devils completely locked down the perimeter, forcing the Bulldogs to shoot 17.6 percent from three.

One of the most surprising parts of the game came when Bryant went to the line. The Bulldogs were only able to knock down two of their 15 free throw attempts, while Central Connecticut was able to make good on their chances at the charity stripe, going 13-17 from the line.

Sophomore forward Jamey Napolean blocked three shots on the night. The Blue Devils blocked seven of Bryant’s shots Tuesday. They are far and away leading the Northeast Conference in that statistic, averaging seven a game this season.

Central Connecticut was out-rebounded by Bryant 46-36. Central’s rebounding has ranked towards the bottom of the conference this year. On average the Blue Devils are out-rebounded by their opponent by just over eight rebounds per game.

The Blue Devils had plenty of time to prepare for this matchup with the Bulldogs. The game was postponed twice before due to positive COVID-19 test results from a tier one personnel on both CCSU and Bryant.

The win put an end to Central Connecticut’s four game losing streak and improves the team’s record to 3-6 on the year.

Central Connecticut finishes off their series against Bryant at home on Feb. 10 then is back on the road against Merrimack just a few days later. The Blue Devils will take on the Warriors in a two game series played on Feb. 13 and 14.