HANOVER, N.H. – Lauren Clarke's crucial free throws in the final minute helped the Brown women's basketball team hold off a furious Dartmouth rally and score a hard-fought 46-43 win at Leede Arena on Friday night. With the win, the Bears notch their 10th win of the season and fourth victory in Ivy play. The Big Green falls to 5-22 (2-11 Ivy) with the loss.
Brown surrendered a season low 43 points, including just eight in the first half, en route to its fourth consecutive triumph at Leede Arena.
Sophie Bikofsky (Newton, Mass.) paced the Bears with 15 points on 4-of-10 shooting while Sophie Beutel (Toronto, Ont.) hauled in a season high nine rebounds. Senior Carly Wellington (Lake Oswego, Ore.) chipped in with nine points and tied a career best with eight rebounds.
Fanni Szabo led all Big Green scorers with 11 points while Abbey Schmitt added eight rebounds and eight points for Dartmouth on Friday.
A sluggish start for both offenses saw just a 2-0 Dartmouth lead at the initial media timeout before a 12-2 run for Brown, led by five points from Bikofsky, gave the Bears a 12-4 lead. The junior from Newton, Massachusetts outscored the entire Big Green in the first half, netting 12 points.
Giveaways plagued both teams early, as Brown and Dartmouth combined for 22 turnovers in the opening 20 minutes of play.
A stout Brown defense had held Morgan State to a previous first half low of 19 points back on December 8, but the Bears tightened up even more on Friday, allowing just eight points in the opening 20 minutes. Holding a 16-7 lead, Bikofsky's trey gave Brown its largest lead of the half at 11 with just under a minute to play.
Dartmouth regained its stroke in second half as they scored the first seven points to cut the Brown lead to 19-15. After both teams traded baskets, Dartmouth's Abbey Schmidt knotted the game for the first time at the 13:11 mark. Carly Wellington's trey on the next possession was countered by Fanni Szabo's three, tying the game at 26.
With Brown holding a one-point edge at 39-38, Szabo's trey gave the Big Green its first lead of the contest since scoring the game's first basket with 2:56 to play. KJ Veldman (Spirit Lake, Iowa) gave the Bears two clutch three-pointers down the stretch, including a trey with 2:15 to play to put the Bears up for good at 42-41.
Clarke's 4-of-4 performance from the line in the final minute salted the game away, as Szabo's game-tying trey attempt was offline at the buzzer to secure the Brown victory.
Brown concludes its 2013-14 regular season slate at Harvard's Lavietes Pavilion tomorrow night at 6 p.m.