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Firebirds Start Strong, Can’t Finish in 82-75 Loss vs. NYIT

Freshman forward Sarah Hare scored a season-high 11 points and had three offensive rebounds.
Freshman forward Sarah Hare scored a season-high 11 points and had three offensive rebounds.

WASHINGTON, DC – The University of the District of Columbia women's basketball team was defeated, 82-75 by New York Institute of Technology in East Coast Conference play Saturday afternoon at the UDC Sports Complex.

The Firebirds (2-17, 0-9 ECC) led 23-15 at the end of the first quarter – their largest lead at the end of the first period this season – and they out-scored the Bears 23-21 in the 3rd quarter to pull within three (64-61) heading into the final period. Three-and-a-half minutes into the 4th quarter, the Firebirds had pulled within one, 68-67, but at that point, they allowed NYIT on an 11-3 run and the Bears ultimately went on to a comfortable, seven-point margin of victory. NYIT snapped a three-game losing streak with today's win and improved to 11-8 overall and 5-4 in league play.

Freshman guard Daeja Quick led UDC with 18 points while also producing a game-high five steals, four assists and three rebounds. Freshman forward Sarah Hare set a season-high mark with 11 points while also hauling in five rebounds – three on the offensive glass. Also, sophomore guard Tyra Coombs had a solid outing with nine points, eight rebounds and three assists.

NYIT was led by three double-figure scorers, with guard Maia Hood carrying much of the scoring load with a game-high 28 points on 11-of-14 FG shooting and 5-of-8 made free-throws. Guards Shalie Frierson and Corinn Baggs also scored 19 and 14 points, respectively, and they combined for 11 rebounds and three steals. Also, running the show was ECC Preseason Player of the Year and NYIT's all-time assists leader, Nina Vukosavljevic, with a game-high nine assists.

The Bears out-shot UDC 48-percent (28-of-59) to 42-percent (27-of-65) from the field and 41-percent (7-of-17) to 32-percent (7-of-22) from three-point range. They also had four more assists (17-13) and three fewer turnovers (19-16). The Firebirds led by as many as 14 early in the 2nd quarter and remained in striking distance for much of the game - never trailing by more than 13 - thanks to a 44-35 win in the rebounding battle and a 28-16 advantage in bench points.

Next up for UDC is an ECC battle on the road at Molloy College on Wednesday, January 24th at 5 p.m.