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Nazareth women’s basketball team uses big first half to defeat AU
1/27/12

ALFRED, NY - A 17-point halftime deficit provided too much to overcome for the Alfred University women’s basketball team in a 69-58 loss to visiting Nazareth Friday evening at the McLane Center.

The loss spoiled solid performances by AU sophomore forward Grace Williamson (Olean, NY/Olean) and freshman guard Harley Cleary (Rochester, NY/Mercy). Williamson, who came into the contest ranked fourth in the country in double-doubles with 11, notched her 12th of the year with 19 points and a game-high 19 rebounds to go with two blocks and two steals. Cleary scored a game-best 22 points to go with five rebounds. She entered the game ranked 19th in the country in free throw shooting (86.8 percent) and made 11 of 13 of her attempts from the line Friday.

Ten Nazareth players scored in the first half as the Golden Flyers (10-8, 3-5 Empire 8) used 57-percent shooting (16 of 28; three of eight from three-point range) to open a 44-27 lead at intermission. Alfred, meanwhile, shot only 24 percent from the floor in the first frame (eight of 24; one of 11 from behind the arc).

The AU defense buckled down in the second half, holding Naz to 36 percent shooting (8 of 22), but Alfred managed to make only 31 percent (10 of 32) of its shots after intermission. Alfred outscored the Golden Flyers 31-25 in the second half but could get no closer than nine points late in regulation.

Senior point guard Kacey Kwiecien (Perry, NY/Perry) (five assists) and freshman forward Lindsay Drummond (Ogdensburg, NY/Ogdensburg) (four rebounds) each scored seven points for Alfred (7-12, 0-8 Empire 8).

Erica Shaw (three assists) and Katie Kollar (four rebounds) each scored 12 points to lead four Naz players in double figures. Brittany Wilson had 11 points and six rebounds and Brittany TallChief added 10 points, two blocks and a team-leading seven rebounds.

AU plays next on Saturday, Jan. 28, at 2 p.m. at home against Empire 8 foe St. John Fisher.