FREDERICKSBURG, Va. - Mary Washington opened the game on a 20-7 run and never looked back as the Bridgewater Eagles women's basketball team dropped its final non-conference contest of the season by a 56-41 margin on the road on Monday night.
Mary Washington struck first before the Eagles answered with a Jessica Mullen layup to knot the game up at two points each after the opening possession for both teams.
Following the Mullen bucket, Mary Washington went on a quick 8-1 run to build a 10-3 lead with 17 minutes to play in the opening half forcing a Bridgewater timeout. Bridgewater's lone point during the run came on a free throw from Katelynn Hottinger.
Out of the timeout, a Jessi Strom jumper ended the Mary Washington run but the Eagles again answered with a bucket to push their lead back to seven at a 12-5 advantage.
Mary Washington kept its offense rolling with a pair of visits to the free throw line. The Eagles converted both shots on back-to-back trips to build a 16-5 lead over Bridgewater with 15:36 remaining in the opening half.
Mullen again answered with a layup to put a short stop the Mary Washington run before a Carol Dye layup and an Erin Drumheller jumper pushed the Eagles out in front by a 20-7 tally with 13:33 to go in the first stanza forcing the Eagles to use another timeout.
Following the Bridgewater timeout, the two teams traded scores over the next two-plus minutes with Mary Washington still holding on to a double-digit lead at a 25-14 tally with 11 and change to play in the first half.
Sophomore Shannan Thorne knocked in a layup with 10:06 to play in the opening frame to cut the lead back to single digits before a Mullen jumper trimmed the Mary Washington advantage to 25-18 with 9:26 to play in the first.
After the Mullen jumper, Mary Washington ran its lead back to 11 at a 29-18 margin off of a pair of free throws and a Dye bucket.
A pair of Hottinger buckets from the charity stripe got the Eagles to within nine, 29-20, with 5:42 to go in the opening half which is where it would stay for the ensuing four-plus minutes as both teams went ice cold from the floor.
With 52 ticks to play in the first, Mullen knocked in a trey to end the scoreless drought for both teams and draw the Eagles to within six, 29-23.
Mary Washington tallied the final points of the half from the charity stripe as Claire Haeuptle converted a pair of shots from the free-throw line to put UMW up 31-23 at the intermission.
Dye led all scorers in the first half with 10 points, while Mullen paced the Bridgewater offense with nine points.
Out of the intermission, Mary Washington struck first on the opening possession of the frame before Dye added a jumper to build the UMW lead back to a dozen, 35-23, just 80 seconds into the second stanza.
Mary Washington added to its lead on an Aubrey Howland layup to extend the Eagles' lead to 37-23 with 17:49 to play in the game forcing another Bridgewater timeout.
Junior Molly Shelley buried a jumper to put the Eagles on the board in the second half before a Thorne layup carved the Mary Washington advantage back to 10, 37-27, with 16:25 remaining.
Bridgewater cut the lead back to single digits off of a Shelley layup prior to Mullen knocking in a jumper to bring the Eagles to within seven at a 39-32 margin with 11 and change to play. Mullen later hit a free throw to bring the contest to within two possessions at a 39-33 gap.
Haeuptle buried a three-pointer for Mary Washington to push the lead back to nine until the Eagles responded with a scores from Hottinger and junior Holly Morgan to trim the game to a five-point UMW advantage, 42-37.
A pair of Thorne jumpers got the Eagles to within three points with eight and change to play before a Dye layup ended Bridgewater's spurt to push the Mary Washington lead back to five at a 44-39 tally with six and change left
UMW's Brieneke Matthes knocked in a pair of shots from the charity stripe before a Caitlin Ciniero layup pushed Mary Washington back out to a nine-point lead, 48-39.
With 5:19 to play, Hottinger hit a free throw to bring the game to an eight-point Mary Washington advantage but it was as close as the Eagles would get as Mary Washington pulled away down the stretch to a 56-41 victory.
Mullen paced the Bridgewater offense with a dozen points on the evening while Hottinger added eight.
Thorne pulled down a team-high nine rebounds in the loss as the Eagles were out-rebounded by a 41-34 margin.
Dye paced the Mary Washington offense with a game-high 18 points. The senior center also pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds to post a double-double.
Bridgewater is back in action on Wednesday at home when it hosts Shenandoah. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m.