WILLIAMSBURG — William & Mary women’s basketball fought tooth and nail with another in-state foe on Thursday night at Kaplan Arena, but again received the short end of the stick, falling to Old Dominion 72-66.
The undefeated Monarchs (6-0, 0-0 SBC) entered the game with the nation’s best defense statistically and showed why off the bat forcing, three W&M (2-5, 0-0 CAA) turnovers in the first 90 seconds to take a 7-0 lead.
After a quick timeout from Erin Dickerson Davis, the Tribe counter-punched, scoring the next eight points behind a pair of triples from Bella Nascimento and a layup from Nylah Young to take the lead, 8-7, with 6:47 remaining in the first.
Nascimento and Young once again paced the Tribe’s offense, with the two transfer standouts scoring 20 and 19 points respectively. Young added in a team-high six boards and posted a career-high four blocks on the evening.
Both teams slowed offensively over the following five minutes, trading buckets sporadically, until the Green and Gold went on a 6-0 run, capped by free throws by Kayla Beckwith and Anahi-Lee Cauley, to go up 18-12.
It would be the largest lead the Tribe would hold all night with 1:33 to go in the first, and the frame ended with the hosts leading 18-15.
Both sides continued going blow-for-blow in the second stanza, with ODU regaining the lead at 24-22 only for the Tribe to pop back in front 26-24 off a jumper from Young with 2:19 to play in the half.
Kayla Rolph and Cassidy Geddes added free throws with the clock winding down in the quarter, as W&M went to the break with a 33-32 lead.
The freshman Geddes set the table well all evening, handing out five of the Tribe’s 16 assists in the game. The five helpers tied her career-high in her first college season.
ODU sprinted ahead 37-33, thanks to a 5-0 spurt in the first minute of the third. The Tribe once again leveled the score at 37-all thanks to four straight points from Young.
The score would be tied five more times in the frame, with the lead changing hands seemingly every minute. The game saw 12 total lead changes and 14 ties, but ODU took the lead for good as the wild third ended, 51-49.
Young scored immediately to lead off the final frame before ODU answered with their lone 3-pointer of the quarter to go ahead 54-51.
The Tribe found themselves trailing by four with 8:12 to play in regulation before Rolph and Nascimento converted buckets inside the arc to level the score at 57.
The two teams continued to trade buckets, with the game’s last tie being with 2:58 on the clock when Young completed an and-one.
ODU scored the game’s next five points and were able to convert their free throws down the stretch, to take a 72-66 win back to Norfolk.
W&M, already leading the CAA in free throws attempted per game, got to the line for 30 attempts, knocking down 24 on the night.
ODU was led by Jordan McLaughlin’s game-high 22 points, as the Monarch’s shot 39% from the floor and 6-for-20 from deep.
The Tribe was 41% from the field, but after Nascimento knocked down her two triples in the first three minutes, W&M missed their next 15 tries from three to go 2-for-17 on the evening.
ODU scored 21 points off of 18 W&M turnovers, while the Tribe scored 19 points off of 15 Monarch blunders.