Slow Start Hurts Women's Basketball in 53-39 Loss to Smith

KEENE, N.H. - The Keene State College women's basketball team held Smith College to just 34.5% shooting overall, but fell behind early and never recovered in a 53-39 loss to the Pioneers Tuesday night at Spaulding Gymnasium.


  • Keene State: 0-6
  • Smith: 6-0

How It Happened

Hien Thach led the Owls by chipping in a little bit of everything on the evening, finishing with eight points, six rebounds, five assists and a pair of steals.  Hailey Derosia had seven points and three rebounds, while Katie Martineau made two of her three triple attempts for KSC, but the home team shot just 29% and was outrebounded 52-25.  Two Pioneers notched double-figure point totals, as Ally Yamada (18 points) and Amelia Clairmont (14 points) totaled 32 out of the 53 points for Smith on a combined 12-for-27 shooting.  Dashelle Gleissner just missed a triple-double, finishing with nine points, a game-high nine rebounds and nine assists for the Pioneers.

The Owls cracked the scoreboard quickly, as Jordyn Burke fed Kenzie Bennett for a three 30 seconds in, but Smith College saw Yamada and Gleissner can triples as part of an 11-0 surge that give the visitors an eight-point lead not even three minutes in.  Keene State did not score again until the 4:26 mark of the first quarter when Jenny Freedman made a free throw to make it 11-4.  The Pioneers led throughout, including 19-8 after one quarter.  Neither team scored over the opening three minutes of the second period, but shortly thereafter, a pair of long-range shots from Clairmont extended Smith's lead to 25-11 with 5:36 left until halftime.  Katie Martineau sparked an 8-0 Owl run, as her two triples made it a single-digit game again before Thach split the defense to make it 25-19 at the 3:15 mark.  KSC had a chance to draw even closer, but could not convert a layup and wound up trailing 29-19 at the break after Yamada scored in the final seconds.

Smith gained separation with a 7-0 run in the opening 2:20 of the third quarter, which included another triple each from Yamada and Clairmont, who combined to make seven (of the Pioneers' nine) on the evening.  Trailing 36-19, the home team attacked the basket and got three layups on consecutive possessions to make it an 11-point game with just over five minutes to go in the peirod, but the Pioneers still maintained a 42-29 edge into the fourth.  The Owls pushed in the final quarter, as a layup from Samantha Adamson and a three-point play by Thach made it 42-34 with just under eight minutes to go.  Keene State once again had chances to get even closer, but a turnover and a pair of missed jumpers followed and Smith pushed their lead back to 11 with 5:30 to go.  Thach grabbed a board and then knocked down a three 21 seconds later to again make it an eight-point game (45-37) at the five minute mark, but a pair of Yamada threes over the next two minutes all but sealed the game for the Pioneers.

Inside the Paint

  • KSC did not have a scorer in double figures for the first time since January 26, 2018 at UMass Dartmouth and their 29% shooting was a season-low.
  • This was just the fourth head-to-head meeting between the two teams since the 1984-85 season.  Keene State had won the previous two, including a 77-55 final in November of 2015.

Up Next

  • Keene State will look to pick up their first win of the season on Saturday, November 30 when they welcome Fitchburg State University to Spaulding Gymnasium.  Tip-off is set for 3:00 pm.
  • The Pioneers travel to RPI on Monday, December 2 for a 6:00 start in Troy, N.Y.