NEW BRITAIN - Central Connecticut women's basketball was unable to top Sacred Heart on Monday, falling at home in a 63-56 score.
The Blue Devil women fell behind from the jump, allowing a 7-0 run by the Pioneers to open play. Eden Nibbelink's 3-point score at 7:04 in the first quarter got CCSU it's first points of the game, but it was an uphill battle to match Sacred Heart for the remainder of the game.
Points from Forever Toppin and Belle Lanhper evened the score in the first quarter at nine a side, Sacred Heart regained the lead off free throws and a basket the other way.
In the first quarter the Blue Devils committed eight turnovers, a number which only grew as the game progressed. Despite the turnovers in the offensive zone, the Pioneers led 15-13, proving CCSU was still in the game through 10 minutes of action.
CCSU saw the deficit balloon to eight in the second half, but chipped away slowly. An Ashley Berube score with about a minute left before intermission made it 27-22, putting CCSU within striking distance before the break.
Sacred Heart extended its lead to as much as 12 in the second half, with CCSU's closest push coming within three points off a Dejah Jenkins corner three with 31 seconds to go to make it 59-56. The score followed a Claire Sutherland-Case layup that added some momentum late.
Leading in scoring for CCSU was Berube, who had 23 points and five rebounds. Toppin was the next highest scorer for CCSU with nine points. Sutherland-Case led the team in rebounds with eight.
Sonia Smith led Sacred Heart in scoring with 18 points. Adrianne Hagood had 12 points and Kelsey Wood had 10 points with 11 rebounds for a double-double.
The Blue Devils committed 18 turnovers to Sacred Heart's 17.