There are challenges and then there is what the UMPI Owls women's basketball team faced on Wednesday night in the 2nd game of their 3-game, 7 day road trip. The mission: take on Williams College, the #18 ranked NCAA Division III team in the nation according to d3hoops.com.
Along with a 12-1 record, the Ephs boast starters listed at 6'0, 6'0, and 6'3. By comparison, the Owls Rashell Saucier (So. / Washburn, ME) is UMPI's tallest starter, coming in at 5 feet, 9 inches. Despite their "tall task" the Owls were able to hang with Williams early before the Ephs settled in and ultimately overpowered the visitors, 68-35.
The Owls battled early, trading buckets with Williams and leading 10-8 with 12:28 left to go in the 1st half. A 14-0 run by Williams at that point gave them a lead they would not relinquish the rest of the way. The score at halftime was 32-13.
"We knew we had to play near perfect to have a chance," said Owls' head coach Marc Heidorf, "but this is a great way to measure ourselves against one of the best teams in the country. We may not be there yet, but we also did some things tonight that hopefully will give us confidence in the future now that we know have done it against a very, very good team."
Saucier led the Owls on the night with 11 points and 9 rebounds. Newcomer Becca Campbell (Fr. / Washburn, ME) pulled down 6 rebounds in her first extended action since joining the team after the holidays.
UMPI finished up their road trip tomorrow, Thursday January 12th when they visit Eastern Connecticut State. Game time is set for 7:30pm.