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Bryn Mawr Gives Ursinus Tough Test in Home Opener

Halena Martin lines up a shot against Swarthmore in the fall of 2018

BRYN MAWR, Pa. - The Bryn Mawr basketball team played their first home game of the 2019-2020 season earlier Tuesday night in the Class of 1958 Gymnasium. The Owls gave Ursinus a battle throughout the night, keeping things close early and outscoring the Bears in the third quarter. However, it was Ursinus who would pull away to take the win on the night, claiming a 73-35 victory thanks to nine points apiece from Gabby Downs and Erin Devine. Lipi Paladugu once again put on a strong showing for the Owls, leading the team in scoring for the second-straight game with eight points on the night.

Ursinus jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the contest, but Bryn Mawr got on the board early as well. Meagan Murray-Bruce got great positioning down low and took a nice entry pass from Odinaka Oranekwu to get an early layup. After Ursinus built a 10-2 lead, a well-timed timeout from head coach Becky Tyler settled her team down, and the Owls immediately got back on the board on a jumper from Halena Martin. A few empty possessions later, Murray-Bruce converted another layup to trim the deficit to four points. The Bears would bump the lead back up to 18-6 via a nice run of their own, but Bryn Mawr closed the quarter with back-to-back baskets. The second, a layup from Sydney Collins as the horn sounded on a feed from Martin, made it a single digit game once again after one quarter of play.

Unfortunately for the Owls, things went a little sideways in the second quarter. Bryn Mawr turned the ball over seven times in the frame and shot just 2-for-13 from the field, only scoring five points in the quarter. Meanwhile, Ursinus got hot, shooting 9-for-19 from the floor to outscore Bryn Mawr 20-5 in the frame.

That effort gave the Bears a comfortable lead headed into the halftime break, but Bryn Mawr did a great job in the third quarter of turning things around a bit. Lipi Paladugu opened the quarter with a smooth jumper right off the bat, and after a strong defensive possession from the Owls, Brendan Harrison canned a three-pointer on the other end to get Bryn Mawr to 20 points. Later on, Martin would hit another jumper, and then May Hanlon hit another big triple for the Owls right before the quarter ended. That basket helped Bryn Mawr outscore Ursinus 10-9 in the frame, as Sydney Collins came up with a big block in the final seconds to close the book on the quarter.

In the fourth quarter, however, Ursinus once again exploded offensively. The visitors shot an absurd 11-for-15 from the floor in the quarter, including going 3-for-4 from beyond the arc. Bryn Mawr went a perfect 4-for-4 from the free throw line in the frame, and Ella Kotsen got on the board in the final moments on a fantastic steal and coast-to-coast layup. However, Ursinus outscored the Owls 26-10 in the frame en route to the 73-35 victory on the night.

The Owls will now get a bit of a break for the Thanksgiving holiday before returning to action on their home floor next Monday. Bryn Mawr will welcome Franklin & Marshall for another Centennial Conference showdown on December 2nd, with gametime in the Class of 1958 Gymnasium slated for 7:00 PM.