BENNINGTON -- Southern Vermont College women’s basketball coach Mike Quinn said the first 13 minutes of his Mountaineers’ game on Saturday against Regis College were the best they’ve played so far this season.
Unfortunately, it’s the other 27 minutes Quinn is still worried about.
Southern Vermont (1-6) was held under 30 percent shooting, including 2-of-16 from three-point range, in a 73-41 loss to the Pride.
"This is a team that’s 39-0 in conference play in the regular season," Quinn said. "They’re a very good squad. We are young, we don’t react well to pressure. We played with them for 13 minutes and I’m happy with that."
The Mountaineers came out and stuck with Regis in the opening minutes, taking an early 6-5 lead after Mariah Anthony hit a jumper and was fouled. But the Pride started to roll after that from the outside, as Taylor Bunkley and Emilee Marro drained threes on back-to-back possessions to retake the lead. Then Sarah Paskevich capped off an 11-0 run with yet another three to give the Pride a 10-point lead.
"My first eight played well, then we got tired and a little overwhelmed," Quinn said. "I truly believe this team is believing in itself, that’s key in any athletic event. They played the best 13 minutes all year because of who they were playing.
SVC’s Amber Flagg stopped the run with a three of her own, and baskets by Sarah McDonald and Flagg a moment later cut the lead to 16-13, forcing a Pride timeout to regroup.
McDonald and Flagg each had 12 points to lead the Mountaineers.
"I told them to keep shooting, because if we don’t, we won’t be shooting later," Quinn said. "We got 56 shots, we aim for 60 every game, they just didn’t fall for us."
The more-experienced Pride finished the half in a big way, scoring baskets off of turnovers to take a 38-21 lead into the break. The Pride forced SVC into 20 turnovers overall.
Southern Vermont cut the lead to 15 early in the second half, but Regis used solid outside shooting to pull away to the final margin.
"We made some halftime adjustments, got more kids in, gave us more energy," said Regis coach Angela Santa Fe. "It got the other starters sparked and we got it together from there."
For Regis, three players were in double figures, including Marro, who led the team with 13. Bunkley and Paskevich each added 10. Paskevich was 3-for-3 beyond the arc.
"We have to learn how to finish," Quinn said. "We’ve played the top three teams in the conference in Elms, Daniel Webster and Regis. We have to forget it and move on to Friday against Morrisville."