For Immediate Release: January 16, 2008
Contact: David O'Brian (
Phone: 607-777-6478

Franceski Leads Women's Hoops to 65-58 road win over defending league champion UMBC

Junior goes for 27 points to lead BU to 2-0 start in AE play

Box Score

BALTIMORE, Md.- Junior forward Laura Franceski (Moscow, Pa.) scored a career-high 27 points and a season-high six blocks, powering Binghamton (4-11, 2-0 AE) to a 65-58 win over UMBC (5-11, 1-2 AE) in an America East Conference women's basketball game on Wednesday afternoon at the RAC Arena.

With the victory, the Bearcats are off to a 2-0 in conference play for the third time since joining the America East prior to the 2001-02 season.

"We are very excited to get our first road win," head coach Rich Conover said. "We had a great run in the first half in which we were very good defensively. It was also good that we were able to close the game after UMBC made a great run in the second half."

Franceski, who also had four rebounds and three steals, netted 16 of her points in the second half. Her effort represents the highest scoring game by a Binghamton player since current senior center Laine Kurpniece (Riga, Latvia) scored 28 points against La Salle on Nov. 30, 2005.

Kurpniece added 12 points and sophomore point guard
Muffy Sadler (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) chipped in 10 points.

Down 9-5, the Bearcats blew the game open with a 22-2 run in a span of 9:39 to take a 27-11 lead with two minutes left in the first half. UMBC scored the next five points, but Binghamton got back-to-back baskets by junior center Erin Owens (Coopersburg, Pa.) and sophomore guard Darryll Peterson (Baltimore, Md.) to take a 31-16 lead at the break.

UMBC went on a 17-6 run in a span of 6:07 to get to within 49-42 at the 4:33 mark of the second half. Franceski responded by sinking a pair of free throws and Sadler nailed a three pointer to pad the lead to 54-42 with 3:25 remaining.

Sophomore guard Carlee Cassidy, who led UMBC with 20 points, narrowed the margin to 60-54 on a three-pointer with 43 seconds to go. From there, however, Binghamton converted five of six free throws to seal the win.

Binghamton hosts New Hampshire on Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Events Center.

NOTES: Kurpniece now has 982 career points. She needs 18 points to become the 10th player in school history to reach the 1,000-point mark … senior guard Laura Sario (Espoo, Finland) finished with a team-best six assists … Franceski now has 119 career blocks.

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