OXFORD, Ohio –The Miami University women’s basketball team was able to close to within four with six minutes to go in the second half, but was unable to complete the comeback as Buffalo pulled away for a 74-61 victory on Saturday. The RedHawks fall to 7-20 overall and 3-13 in the Mid-American Conference. The Bulls improve to 16-11 overall and 9-7 in the MAC.
The game was Miami’s Think Pink game, and all proceeds from the game will go to support local breast cancer survivors via Luna Cares.
Freshman guard Jillian Spurlock and senior guard Hannah Robertson helped spark the Miami comeback in the second half, as the ‘Hawks were down by as many as 20 points in the first half. Spurlock finished with a team-high 19 points, 17 of which came after halftime, on 8-for-12 shooting. She also had five rebounds and one steal in 24 minutes of action. Hannah Robertson contributed 18 points on 7-for-12 shooting.
A fast paced start to the contest saw a combined 33 points scored in the first 6:30 minutes. After Buffalo jumped to a 7-2 advantage, jumpers by Spurlock and sophomore forward Hannah McCue cut the deficit to one. The Bulls pushed the lead back to seven at 15-8, but senior guard Haley Robertson answered with a three-pointer. After the teams traded buckets, a three-pointer by UB gave it a 20-13 lead at the 13:28 mark.
The RedHawks went cold as they were unable hit a shot from the field over a 10 minute period. During that time frame, the Bulls went on a 17-4 run to build a 34-17 lead. Hannah Robertson ended the run with a jump shot, but UB scored the next five to build its biggest advantage at 39-19 with 2:32 to go.
A three-pointer from McCue began the comeback attempt. Hannah Robertson followed with a old-fashioned three-point play, while freshman forward Nicole Anderson knocked down a pair of field goals as Miami closed the half on an 8-2 run to pull within 14 at 41-27 going into the break.
The RedHawks shot 9-for-29 (31.0 percent) during the first half, while the Bulls were 15-for-33 (45.5 percent). Hannah Robertson led Miami with nine points.
Spurlock scored seven straight points for the RedHawks as Miami opened the second half on a 7-4 run. Buffalo pushed the lead back to 17 at 51-34, but back-to-back layups by Hannah Robertson made it a 13 point game. Neither team could score over the next couple of minutes until layups from Hannah Robertson and Spurlock made it 51-42 with 10:26 to go.
The teams traded buckets over the next few minutes. With Buffalo in front, 59-48, two free throws by Anderson began Miami’s final comeback attempt. Spurlock drained a pair of free throws, while Hannah Robertson also hit one. Spurlock followed with a jumper that made it a four-point game at 59-55 with 5:58 remaining.
Miami’s shot went cold as the Bulls scored the next eight points to make it a double-digit lead once again at 67-55. Spurlock answered with back-to-back jumpers to make it an eight-point game with 2:13 to go, but a three-pointer as the shot clock was expiring by UB put the game away. Buffalo hit its free throws down the stretch to finish off the 74-61 win.
After shooting much better in the second half, Miami finished the game 21-for-56 (37.5 percent) from the field. The RedHawks were 16-for-19 (84.2 percent) from the free throw line. McCue scored seven for MU, while senior center Kelsey Simon contributed six. Anderson finished with a career-high tying four assists. Buffalo was led by Kristen Sharkey with 22 points.
The RedHawks return to action on Wednesday when they host MAC-leading Bowling Green at noon. That contest is the third annual Goals for Life game, and will see nearly 800 students from Talawanda Middle School in attendance. Tim Bray has the call and it can be seen live on Miami All-Access for those who have a subscription.