Albany deals women’s basketball program’s largest deficit since joining D-I

A record-setting win for one team was a record-setting loss for another.

The Binghamton women’s basketball team’s 86-35 loss Wednesday night at SEFCU Arena featured a 51-point differential that was the Bearcats’ worst since joining Division I in 2001. For Albany, the 37th consecutive America East win tied Maine’s record, set between 1995 and 1997.

The Bearcats (4-22, 1-12 AE), who have lost 11 straight, struggled from the opening tip against the conference-leading Great Danes (24-3, 14-0 AE). Aided by two layups and a free throw from senior guard Tammy Phillips, Albany jumped out to an 8-0 lead and never looked back. Albany’s defense also came in full force as Binghamton’s offense struggled to break the press in a first half plagued by turnovers and fast breaks for the Great Danes.

“We knew they were going to be tough coming in, especially on their home floor,” BU head coach Nicole Scholl said. “I knew they were going to play well and be successful. I thought in the beginning we battled pretty well with them, but their pressure in the end got to us and we weren’t knocking down shots.”

The Great Danes found success in the halfcourt, feeding the ball to sophomore forward Shereesha Richards and 6-foot-9 junior center Megan Craig in the post. BU headed into the locker trailing, 40-18, after allowing a 10-0 run to close the half.

“Part of it is we were just outsized on the inside,” Scholl said of Albany’s domination in the paint. “I thought our post players did a good job trying to battle with them. I think we had some good possessions where they missed some shots and we got some rebounds, but it just wasn’t enough to overcome.”

To start the second half, the Great Danes extended their lead to 30 points with a 14-6 run. Unable to respond, the Bearcats watched as Albany ran the lead to 40 with five minutes left.

The story of the game can largely be shown by — and will certainly be remembered by — the numbers. BU shot just 26.7 percent from the field, turned the ball over 31 times and recorded only 27 rebounds to Albany’s 44.

“The 31 turnovers were huge. Those are 31 less shot opportunities,” Scholl said. “It’s unfortunate we weren’t handling the pressure well. It’s just one of those things where Albany is a good team, and they came in and performed.”

Not a single Bearcat scored in double figures. Sophomore guard Kandace Newry led the team with nine points and four rebounds, and classmate Kim Albrecht added seven points.

Albany saw three players reach double digits. Richards posted a game-high 20 points and eight rebounds, Craig finished with 18 points and junior guard Sarah Royals added 16.

BU returns to action Saturday against Vermont, which sits two places above the Bearcats in the AE with three conference wins on the season. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. at Patrick Gym in Burlington, Vt.