WORCESTER, MASS. –  Despite 21 points from freshman Fanni Szabo, the Dartmouth women’s basketball team dropped its season opener, 84-59, to Holy Cross on Friday evening at the Hart Center.

In a tale of two halves, the Big Green were outscored 44-19 at the half, but then scored 40 points in the final stanza, with 14 coming from Szabo. Senior Nicola Zimmer finished with 12 points and sophomore Lakin Roland chipped in 10 for the Big Green. Junior Tia Dawson finished with six points and nine rebounds off the bench.

“We are going to build upon the positive showing we had in the second half,” said head coach Belle Koclanes. “I’m proud of the effort and energy we had after trailing early on.”

Holy Cross finished the night with all five starters in double figures. Raquel Scott had a game-high 22 points along with seven rebounds and five assists. Emily Parker added 11 points and nine rebounds.

Roland scored the opening point of the season, hitting the back end of a pair from the line with 19:45 remaining. The Crusaders responded and took a 17-3 lead with 12:48 left on a three by Lisa Mifsud. Junior Kamala Thompson cut the Holy Cross 13-0 run with a jumper, shortening the deficit 17-5. 

Holy Cross increased the lead to 21 with 7:41 left on a three-pointer by Brisje Malone, giving the Crusaders a 30-9 advantage. The Big Green answered with a 5-0 run, but still trailed by double figures, 34-14, on a layup by Roland and a three by Szabo. Holy Cross took a 25-point edge on a layup by Jenn Dynis with 1:47 left.  

Szabo led the Big Green at the half with seven points, with Zimmer adding six points on three jumpers. Scott led the Crusaders with 18 points on 8-of-10 from the field. The hosts shot 49 percent from inside with 28 of their 44 points from the paint. Dartmouth struggled on the glass after the first 20 minutes, 25-16, with Emily Parker crashing the boards five times for the Purple.

The Crusaders (1-0) started the second half on a 12-0 run, before a jumper by Zimmer with 15:56 left. Holy Cross took its largest lead of the night, 70-31, on a layup by Parker with 10 minutes remaining, before the Big Green went on a 5-0 run with three points by junior Milica Toskovic and a jumper by Zimmer. 

Dartmouth (0-1) finished the contest shooting 37 percent from the field and 25 percent from the outside. Holy Cross shot 49 percent from the field and 77 percent from the line and added 44 points inside the paint.  The Crusaders finished the contest with 46 rebounds and 28 assists. 

The Big Green will begin the home portion of the non-conference schedule on Monday night when they host local rival Vermont at 7 p.m.