Women’s Basketball: Virginia rally comes up short in 54-51 loss to ECU
East Carolina jumped out to an early 22-2 lead on Virginia on Sunday, then needed a tie-breaking three from Justice Gee with 6.6 seconds left to notch the 54-51 win.
ECU (1-1) scored the game’s first 16 points, with UVA (0-2) not getting on the scoreboard until a layup from freshman Deja Bristol with 59 seconds left in the first quarter.
Virginia went on a 9-2 run midway through the period to get to 32-15 at the half.
The Cavaliers rallied in the second half with sophomore forward Meg Jefferson scoring UVA’s first six points of the third quarter. It was a 10-0 run, fueled by three-pointers from redshirt sophomore guard Amandine Toi sandwiching an and-one from grad student Emily Maupin that pulled the team to within five, 37-32, with 2:52 remaining in the period.
Virginia continued chipping away in the fourth quarter with back-to-back buckets from sophomore guard Carole Miller and Toi moving the Cavaliers to within two, 44-42, with 6:50 remaining.
ECU pushed back out to a five-point lead with three minutes left in the game, but UVA kept working with three points from Toi again making it a two-point game.
Freshman guard Kaydan Lawson erased the remaining deficit by drawing a foul and then converting a pair of free throws with 16 seconds remaining.
Gee hit the three-pointer with 6.6 seconds remaining. ECU played solid defense in the final moments, with UVA tossing up a contested three-point attempt in the final seconds that was off the mark.
“We were able to come back, or just kind of settle ourselves, in the second quarter, but that first quarter was brutal for us,” Virginia coach Tina Thompson said. “I would probably say the best word is that we panicked a little bit, you know, just with their pressure and just kind of got out of the personality of who we are, and they speed us up a lot, so we turned the ball over a lot in the first quarter. We just didn’t get an opportunity to execute.”
Virginia will host James Madison (1-0) on Thursday, Dec. 3 at 7 p.m. at John Paul Jones Arena