LEWISTON — It didn’t take long for the Bates College women’s basketball team to see a different opponent in the second half Friday night.

Trinity came out in the second stanza and was a much more energized and intense team after a slow first half. And there was little the Bobcats could do about it.

The Bantams overcame a halftime deficit and ran away with it in the second half for a 72-55 win. It was the third straight loss for Bates.

“We only made eight baskets in the second half,” Bates coach Jim Murphy said. “We don’t have any margin for error. This is the third straight game we’ve been outrebounded by a wide margin. That’s really hurt us.”

Trinity finished with 43 rebounds while Bates had just 26.

Bates (7-8) was led by Chelsea Nason with 15 and Meredith Kelly with 13. Trinity (10-5) got 16 from Hannah Brickley and 15 from Shantel Hanniford. Moriah Sweeney had 10 while former Lake Region standout Abby Hancock added nine.

Bates led for much of the first half. The Bobcats even had the lead up to nine at one point before holding a 33-29 advantage at the half.

“We knew we weren’t really playing our game in the first half,” Hancock said. “We weren’t moving the ball well. We weren’t getting it inside. We were kind of playing hectic. The second half, we were more focused and wanted to play our game and that’s what we did.”

Trinity’s offense picked up steam and Bates could change the momentum. The Bantams broke open a tie game with a 15-2 run. Hancock sparked it with her second 3 of the half.

“That was nice,” Hancock said. “It was a big confidence boost for me too. I think once we got those early shots, it really got us going, and we didn’t look back from there.”

Trinity shot 62 percent in the second half while Bates shot just 21 percent. The Bobcats went about six minutes with only one basket.

“You’ve got to do something to help yourselves,” Murphy said. “We were getting killed on the boards at halftime. We got outrebounded by 17. It’s the same old, same old. When a team shoots 55 percent against you and you’re shooting 31 percent, you’re not going to win.”

Trinity took the lead on a drive by Sweeney early in the second half. Bates tied it on a free throw by Nason. Hancock’s 3 gave Trinity the lead for good. Her basket was followed by a hoop inside by Brickley. Then Sweeney scored on a drive and Taylor Murtaugh finished off a Hancock pass for a 45-36 lead. Bates got a basket by Nason, but the Bantams ran off  six straight, getting hoops from Hanniford, Brickley and Murtaugh. Bates was down 51-38 before getting two free throws from Allaina Murphy with 11:23 left in the half.

“Our offense was pretty stagnant in the first half,” Hancock said. “We tried to get the floor spread out. We like to look for the backdoor cuts and we like to move the ball a lot.”

One thing Trinity did in the second half was frustrate the Bates offense. The Bobcats found open players in the first half and managed to hit from the outside, including four 3’s. The Bantams did a better job closing in on shooters in the second half.

“Defense is what we really like to focus on,” Hancock said. “That wasn’t going the way we wanted it to in the first half. We just came out there and tried to get in players faces. We didn’t want to let someone  score twice in a row, and we got down to it.”

Bates was down by as many as 16 late in the game. The Bobcats made a 9-2 run that got the lead down to 64-55 with 1:59 left. Bernadette Connors hit a 3 and added a jumper while Nason converted an inbounds pass. Trinity answered that with eight straight to finish the game.

“It’s nice to be back home and see my family and everything and it’s nice to win in Maine,” Hancock said.

Bates opened the nine-point lead in the first half on 3’s from Julia Rafferty, Nason and Kristin Calvo. Trinity battled back and cut the lead with three-point plays from  Hanniford and Mackenzie Griffin. A drive by Christina Raiti made it 33-29 at the half.

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