BOWDOIN COLLEGE’S Taylor Choate (4) goes up for a basket during the Polar Bears’ 91-59 victory over in-state rival University of New England in Brunswick on Tuesday.

BOWDOIN COLLEGE’S Taylor Choate (4) goes up for a basket during the Polar Bears’ 91-59 victory over in-state rival University of New England in Brunswick on Tuesday.

BRUNSWICK

In an opening weekend sweep, Bowdoin College junior guard Abby Kelly led the way for the Polar Bear women’s basketball team, garnering conference and region Player of the Week honors as Bowdoin downed Skidmore and upset third-ranked St. Thomas.

In Bowdoin’s home opener on Tuesday, Kelly had an off night, scoring just two points on 1-for-12 shooting.

BOWDOIN’S ABBY KELLY (22) goes to the basket over UNE defenders Sam MacDonald (10) and Kristine McNall (4).

BOWDOIN’S ABBY KELLY (22) goes to the basket over UNE defenders Sam MacDonald (10) and Kristine McNall (4).

However, the Polar Bears showed their depth, rolling to a 91-59 victory over instate rival University of New England in a battle of early unbeatens inside Morrell Gymnasium, showcasing the many weapons that Bowdoin coach Adrienne Shibles can utilize on a given night.

Junior guard Taylor Choate had a game-high 22 points in the win, while senior captain Kate Kerrigan picked up 18 points, followed by senior captain Lauren Petit’s 14.

“We look for team first, selfless kind of players, and that is our special chemistry,” said Shibles. “We don’t know where our points are going to come from, which is exciting.

“Everything for Abby went in last weekend, and tonight wasn’t her night. But she didn’t hang her head and kept shooting, and it shows that she has grown a lot. She will continue to be a huge threat for us.”

In the early going, the game took on the look of an inside grudge match, as the Nor’Easters (3-1) and Polar Bears struggled to find on offensive rhythm.

That changed rather quickly for the hosts. Led by Kerrigan, Bowdoin closed the opening quarter on a 5-0 run for a 22-15 lead. Kerrigan had 13 first-quarter points, including the final eight of the frame for the Polar Bears.

“The home opener is always exciting, and those nerves are there,” said Kerrigan.

“We were tight,” said Shibles, who watched Kerrigan lead the way. “I don’t know if she got mad at a charge call or what, but she went off and that ignited a more aggressive attitude on our offense. We have a lot of weapons.”

The Bowdoin run continued into the second quarter, with the Polar Bears tallying the first 16 points to complete a 21-0 burst for a 38-15 advantage. Petit drained a pair of long 3-pointers during the big spurt, with Choate swishing a trey to keep the home fans fired up.

UNE managed with just two field goals in the second quarter and trailed the Polar Bears 50-27 at the half.

Second half

After making 18-of-42 from the field (42.9 percent) in opening half, Bowdoin continued to shoot well in the third quarter. Kelly scored her lone points on Bowdoin’s opening possession, and a three-point play by Choate and a field goal by Cordelia Stewart upped the Polar Bear advantage to 30 points, 57-27.

UNE used an 8-0 run to get its offense going, with Shibles calling a timeout.

“We wanted to get back to Bowdoin basketball, get after it in the defensive end,” Kerrigan said of the timeout.

UNE out-scored Bowdoin 22-21 in the third quarter to close to 71-49. Choate scored nine of her points in the frame, with Kerrigan completing her 18-point night. Olivia Shaw had eight points in the third quarter for UNE.

The Polar Bears didn’t let up in the fourth, with Choate and Petit splitting 10 points down the middle.

“A win over UNE is big,” said Shibles, whose 3-0 Polar Bears visit MIT on Saturday at 2 p.m.

All but one Polar Bear scored on the night, with Stewart adding eight points, and Sam Roy and Annie Maher chipping in six each. Kerrigan and Brunswick native Lydia Caputi both pulled down eight rebounds, with Bowdoin holding a 56- 38 advantage on the boards. Choate dished out six assists as Bowdoin finished with 23 helpers in the contest.

“We celebrate everyone’s success and that makes it fun,” said Kerrigan of her team’s chemistry. “Everyone has a role. No matter how big or small it is, we each realize what we are being asked to do.”

Shaw had a double-double for the Nor’Easters with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Sam MacDonald scored 13 of her 15 points in the second half, while Ashley Coneys added 11 points.

Bowdoin 91, UNE 59

At Morrell Gymnasium

UNE 15 12 22 10 59
Bowdoin — 22 28 21 20 91

UNE — Ashley Coneys 5-1-11, Kristie McNall 3-1-8, Jocelyn Chaput 1-1-3, Sam MacDonald 5-2-15, Olivia Shaw 4-9-17, Nicole Hamblin 0-0-0, Madalyn Sanborn 0-0- 0, Madison Lyman 0-0-0, Mary Toman 1-0-3, Laura Holman 0-2-2, Sierra Tartre 0-0- 0, Elyssa Nicholas 0-0-0. Totals — 19-16-59. Bowdoin — Taylor Choate 8-3-22, Kate Kerrigan 6-4-18, Lauren Petit 5-0-14, Lydia Caputi 1-2-4, Abby Kelly 1-0-2, Sam Roy 2-0-6, Fallon Field 0-0-0, Moira Train 1-0-2, Maddie Hasson 1-0-2, Annie Maher 3-0-6, Dorian Cohen 1-0-2, Olivia Ware 1-0-2, Hannah Graham 1-0-3, Cordelia Stewart 4-0-8. Totals — 35-9-91. 3-point field goals — (UNE) MacDonald 3, McNall, Toman; (B) Petit 4, Choate 3, Kerrigan 2, Roy 2, Graham 1. Records — Bowdoin 3-0, UNE 3-1. Up next for the Polar Bears — Saturday at MIT, 2 p.m.


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