NEW BRITAIN - For the second time in three games, the CCSU womenâ€™s basketball team was burned by turnovers, and it led to the teamâ€™s third straight loss.
The Blue Devils battled on Wednesday afternoon and entered the fourth quarter leading Sacred Heart by two, but the teamâ€™s 20 turnovers were too much to overcome in a 66-58 loss on the road.
The 20 giveaways came just six days after CCSU committed 27 turnovers in a loss to Robert Morris to open NEC play, and the team entered Wednesdayâ€™s game with the second-worst turnover margin in the conference.
The Blue Devils started the game strong offensively, building up an eight-point halftime lead thanks to an 8-1 run in the second quarter that was sparked by a driving layup from Bruna Vila Artigues, then continued with consecutive buckets from Jamey Napoleon and Ashley Forker.
Sacred Heart cut its deficit to five with 1:37 left in the half, but Tiffany Slicklein answered for CCSU by drilling a 3-pointer with 15 seconds left to push the lead to eight at the break.
The Blue Devilsâ€™ offense slowed considerably in the third, managing just 10 points before the Pioneers erupted in the fourth and outscored CCSU 22-12 to complete the comeback.
Sacred Heart entered the period trailing by two, but took the lead with 8:05 to go thanks to a 3-pointer from Olivia Dabney. The Blue Devils took the lead back with 6:30 to go on a layup from Forker, but the Pioneers responded with a bucket from Adrianne Hagood 20 seconds later to take the lead for good.
Leading by one with 3:48 to go, Sacred Heart quickly gave itself some valuable separation in the form of an 8-0 run, while CCSU missed six straight shots in that span, including three in one possession in the final minute of play.
Ashley Berube led the Blue Devils with 16 points on an efficient 8-for-16 shooting from the field, but no other teammate finished with more than six points. Hagood paced the Pioneers with a game-high 18 points, including a trio of 3-pointers.
CCSU, now 1-13 on the year and 0-3 in conference play, will return home to host Merrimack on Saturday afternoon. The Warriors are 7-6 on the year.