The Cougars fell to the Tribe on Sunday in a heated matchup in Women’s Basketball. Both teams rode a losing streak into the game, William and Mary’s longest of the year. While the Tribe snapped their five game winless streak, the Cougars continued theirs, taking the fourth loss in a row in front of the home crowd.
The last time these two teams met, it was the Cougars who snapped their three-game losing streak when Kelsey Booth hit a three-pointer in the final 10 seconds, setting Charleston up for the 55-51 victory.
Sunday’s matchup got off to an unusual start, with William and Mary at the line for two free-throws as a consequence of a technical foul awarded for inoperative shot clock lights. This gave the Tribe a one-point lead going into tip off.
The Tribe’s full-court press put the Cougars in hot water as they fought through the defense as well as against the shot clock. Charleston freshman Bri Sullivan, showing out for her first career start, broke the early offensive dry spell scoring the first two baskets for the College.
With William and Mary leading 18-4, Charleston closes out the first quarter with a series of three incredible steals from leading scorer, Bre Bolden. Bolden converts the first two for layups and draws a foul on the third, adding four points to her final 17.
Following Bolden’s defensive burst, the Cougars picked up the intensity—noticeably, forcing mistakes in the Tribe’s previously accurate passes and interrupting their otherwise unerring ball movement. Bolden remained explosive as did Darien Huff, encouraging the rest of the team and fighting to get to the foul line, where they would end up 20 times during the game after forcing William and Mary into 15 fouls. The first half wrapped up with a dead-end steal by Booth.
The Cougars entered the second half and continue fighting to the foul line. Holding the lead 20-33, the Tribe put a powerful man-to-man defense to work limiting the Cougars offensive moves and closing out the third quarter 51-26.
The Tribe’s defense stayed strong during the fourth quarter. The only offensive bright spots for the Cougars were the last two of Bolden’s seven steals, which were converted to two points each. The game ended 66-40 in the Tribe’s favor.
Charleston was seventh ahead of William and Mary in CAA standing prior to Sunday’s loss. The two teams traded standings based on the outcome of the matchup.
The College hits the road for back-to-back road games before returning home for the final home stand of the season next week. University of North Carolina Wilmington comes to town for Senior night on Wednesday, March 2, before the Cougars close out the regular season against James Madison on Saturday, March 5.