SECOND HALF DOOMS UMES IN 61-53 LOSS TO AMERICAN
Karona Roach has led UMES in scoring in seven games this season.
Karona Roach has led UMES in scoring in seven games this season.

Dec. 18, 2012

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PRINCESS ANNE, Md. - UMES led at the half against American and stayed close throughout the game, but fell to the Eagles 61-53 at the Hytche Athletic Center. UMES drops to 3-5 while American goes to 5-4.

The Hawks earned the early advantage off a Shawnee Sweeney (Colonial Heights, Va.) jumper to the game's second minute. UMES countered an Alexis Dobbs three with an Ashleigh Claybrooks (Manassas, Va.) layup to lead 4-3.

American hit a couple of threes, and both teams played strong defense as the visitors led 10-4 through nine minutes of play.

Following a timeout, UMES started using fast breaks to get opportunities, starting with Jameelah Pickard's (Greensboro, N.C.) first basket as a Lady Hawk, followed by two Sha-Kiyla Finney (Portsmouth, Va.) free throws and a Taylor Thompson (Chapel Hill, N.C.) layup to tie the game at 10. After a Stephanie Anya free throw, a Sweeney jumper gave UMES back the lead 12-11 with 8:29 left in the first half.

American went on a 9-0 run to build its lead to eight, later leading 24-17 with 3:33 remaining in the period.

In the final minutes of the half, UMES hit three shots in a row, capped by a Sweeney three, to tie the game. In the last UMES possession of the period, Karona Roach (Bear, Del.) got fouled and hit two free throws to cap a 9-0 run and give the Lady Hawks a 26-24 lead into the locker room.

Ti'Asia McGeorge hit a three pointer on American's first shot of the second half to give the Eagles the lead, starting a 7-2 run to go up 34-30 with 16:34 to go. UMES got back to within one with a Sweeney jumper and Thompson free throw, but the Eagles rebuilt the lead to seven 40-33 at the 11:30 mark.

Roach started making plays for UMES, contributing five points on a 7-2 run to pull UMES back within two 42-40 with less than ten minutes left. Again American rebuilt the lead to seven, and again UMES pulled closer, getting to within one after a Thompson jumper made it 48-47 American with 6:14 left.

After a Jen Dumiak three and an Anya free throw, Pickard hit a second basket to get UMES within three at the final media timeout 52-49. But UMES could not get closer as the two teams traded free throws late, and American took the win 61-53.

Roach led the Hawks in scoring for the seventh time this year with 15 points, adding six rebounds and three assists. Sweeney was second on the team in points with 13, adding six rebounds, while Pickard got six points and a steal off the bench.

Leading American in points was Dobbs with 15, adding a team-best five assists. Dumiak had 13 points with a pair of steals, while Geleisa George had eight points and six rebounds.

UMES will play one more home game before the New Year, taking on UMBC on Friday at 2 p.m. at the Hytche Athletic Center. Attendance for all is free for the game.