SALEM, Mass. – Senior forward Kailyn Aguiar (Acushnet, Mass.) posted a double-double with a game-high 16 points and 11 rebounds to lead the visiting Bridgewater State University women's basketball team to a 56-41 victory over Salem State University in a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) matchup on Wednesday evening at Twohig Gymnasium.
The Bears even their record at 11-11 on the year and improve to 6-3 in the MASCAC, while the Vikings slip to 5-17 overall and 3-7 in conference play.
Aguiar, who has seven double-doubles on the season, connected on 7 of 15 field goal attempts and six of her 11 boards came off the offensive glass. She also added three assists and a steal.
Junior forward Kayla Carter (Beverly, Mass.) and senior guards Sara DaSilva (Chelmsford, Mass.) and Olivia DelGrosso (Ledyard, Conn.) also scored in double figures for the Bears. Carter tallied 12 points to go along with five rebounds, three steals and a blocked shot, while DaSilva and DelGrosso each contributed notched ten points, four boards and a pair of steals.
DelGrosso scored six first-quarter points as Bridgewater State built a 15-8 advantage after one. Trailing 17-8 in the second, Salem State drew to within three points following a pair of baskets by senior guard Tyra Scott (Methuen, Mass.) and a layup by junior forward Mia Crawley (Hyannis, Mass.).
Both teams then went scoreless for nearly three minutes before a layup by Aguiar, who had six points in the quarter, put the Bears ahead 19-14 at the 5:40 mark. Bridgewater State closed the half with an 11-6 spurt as Aguiar and Carter combined for six points, giving the Bears a ten-point halftime lead at 30-20.
Aguiar had 11 first half points on 5-8 (62.5%) shooting while Carter added seven. Sophomore guard Natalie Mellinger (Beverly, Mass.) and Scott led Salem State with seven first-half points apiece.
Both teams struggled to find and offensive flow in the third quarter as Salem State connected on just 5-15 (33.3%) shots while Bridgewater State went 4-14 (28.6%) from the floor. Seven points by Scott in the third helped the Vikings cut into the deficit and after a basket by senior forward Kia Fernandes (Wareham, Mass.), Salem State was behind by just five points, 37-32 with 2:16 left. The Vikings, however, could not draw any closer, exiting the quarter trailing 40-33.
The Bears managed to maintain a comfortable lead in the fourth, answering every Salem State score with one of their own. DaSilva poured in seven of her ten points in the final period, including a layup with 5:17 remaining that put Bridgewater State up 51-39. The Bears built the lead to as many as 15 points twice in the final frame, as DaSilva closed the scoring with two free throws, making the final 56-41.
Bridgewater State shot 42% (24-57) for the game and went just 8-for-16 (50%) at the free throw line. The Bears scored 44 of their 56 points in the paint.
The BSU defense forced 23 turnovers and limited the Vikings to 36% (18-50) shooting including 0-for-8 from behind the arc.
Scott led Salem State with 16 points, while Fernandes added eight points, five rebounds and a pair of steals.
The MASCAC schedule continues for both teams on Saturday afternoon at three. The Bears host Framingham State University, while the Vikings entertain Westfield State University.