SWARTHMORE, Pa. - The Bryn Mawr basketball team got back in action earlier Thursday evening after a few weeks off for the holiday season. The Owls traveled down the road to Swarthmore on this night, looking to shake off the rust of the break at their tri-co rivals. However, despite a highly competitive first quarter by Bryn Mawr, it was the Garnet would lead wire-to-wire in this one. Swarthmore jumped out to a 36-21 lead at halftime and never looked back, ultimately coming away with a 66-42 victory. The Owls got a career-high eight points from Meagan Murray-Bruce to lead the way. Swarthmore was led by Lindsay O'Sullivan, who shined with a 24-point performance on the night.
The opening quarter of tonight's contest was a highly charged affair for both sides. Swarthmore got off to a quick start with a 6-0 run to open the game. Bryn Mawr finally got on the board a few minutes in after a nice drive by Erica Dwyer. The sophomore earned a trip to the free throw line with a great dribble drive past her defender and promptly sank both freebies. Swarthmore answered back with a free throw of their own, but Bryn Mawr continued to chip away. Odinaka Oranekwu picked a Garnet player's pocket and earned a breakaway the other way. Oranekwu was able to draw a foul and still lay the ball in off the glass, but was unable to convert the free throw. Later, Halena Martin got in on the action with a layup of her own.
Now within one, the Owls had a chance to take their first lead of the game after a defensive stop, and they had two cracks at it after a great offensive rebound by Oranekwu. However, the freshman couldn't convert, and Swarthmore came back the other way and bumped their lead back up on a layup by O'Sullivan. Bryn Mawr got back within one on a jumper by Dwyer, but the hosts got another layup from O'Sullivan to stay ahead. That pattern would repeat twice more in the quarter, with baskets from Oranekwu and Kara Breeden pulling the Owls within one only to see the Garnet bounce back ahead with a basket of their own. The hosts would close out the quarter with a pair of free throws to cling to a 15-12 lead.
Unfortunately, that would be as close as the Owls could keep things. Swarthmore started off the second frame with a 7-0 run. Despite scoring from four different Bryn Mawr players in the quarter, the Garnet outscored the visitors 21-9 in the frame. The Owls did a great job rebounding from that tough quarter with a much better performance in the third. Swarthmore once again got the first points of the frame on two free throws, but Erica Dwyer would hit three free throws over the next few minutes. Later, Murray-Bruce hit two free throws of her own, and then she would convert a layup a few minutes later. The trips to the charity stripe continued for Bryn Mawr, as Sydney Garner knocked down a pair of free throws to close out the Owls scoring in what was a solid quarter. Bryn Mawr kept pace with the Garnet all the way through the frame, only getting outscored by two. Unfortunately, Swarthmore would hang on for the with with a strong effort in the fourth, ultimately winning 66-42.
Both sides shot fairly poorly on the night, with the Owls shooting 25% and Swarthmore just a bit better at 29% from the floor. It was an even worse showing from beyond the arc, with the teams combining to shoot a measly 2-for-33 from deep. Ultimately, the hosts earned the win thanks to their offensive rebounding. The Garnet pulled down 28 offensive boards, leading to 26 second-chance points in the game.
Bryn Mawr will look to rebound from tonight's tough loss when they get back in action this weekend. The Owls will travel to McDaniel for a 1:00 PM tip on Saturday.