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Dartmouth Drops a Heartbreaker to Cornell, 49-45

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Sasha Dosenko     By David Silverman(

ITHACA, N.Y. - Trailing 47-45 with less than a minute remaining in the contest, the Dartmouth women's basketball team had a good look at the basket late but the shot wouldn't go down as the Big Green dropped a 49-45 contest to Cornell on Saturday night (Feb. 4).

The Big Green had a chance after Cornell's Shelby Lyman missed the front end of a one-and-one with 21 seconds left. After scooping up the rebound, freshman Kamala Thompson (Seldon, N.Y.) dribbled down the court and put up a shot that rimmed off as Thompson was whistled for a walk. Cornell sealed the win down the stretch, going 3-of-4 from the free throw line en route to the win.

Upperclassmen Faziah Steen (Detroit, Mich.) and Sasha Dosenko (Kiev, Ukraine) led the Big Green offense.  Steen had a game-high 16 points and Dosenko added 13 points. Freshman center Tia Dawson (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) had a team-best five rebounds in the loss.

Dartmouth, who at one point trailed by 14-points, came out of the locker room fired up in the second half. The Big Green used baskets from Dosenko and sophomore guard Nicola Zimmer (Chevy Chase, Md.) on their first two possessions to tie the game at 27-27. Dartmouth took its first lead of the game at the 18:16 mark on a Steen triple and from there the score seesawed.

With the teams matching each other basket for basket in the second frame, Dartmouth pulled out to a five-point lead at the 16:31 mark behind Steen's triple and a basket from Dawson in the paint.

From there the score went back-and-forth with neither team having more than a three-point advantage for the remainder of the contest. The Big Green had a 45-43 lead on another Steen triple but that was the last time Dartmouth would lead Dartmouth dropped its fourth Ivy League contest.

Dartmouth was able to contain Cornell's leading scorer, Clare Fitzpatrick, for the majority of the contest but she came up with a huge jumper in the final minute to help Cornell squeak out the win.

The first half didn't start as smooth for Dartmouth, as they found themselves in an early 11-0 hole thanks in part to Cornell's stifling press at the beginning of the game. The Big Red forced Dartmouth into 14 first half turnovers leading to 16 points on the other end.

Steen breathed some life into the Big Green and with back-to-back buckets in the paint got the Dartmouth going. In a very aggressive game from both sides, the Big Green found a little luck from the line, going 8-of-13 from the charity stripe in the first frame.

Dartmouth got things going midway through the second half as Dosenko started to heat up. Using her size advantage she was able to get inside and make shots and she also helped Dartmouth capitalize on the free throw line; going 4-of-7 in the first half

The Big Green made a move at the 7:17 mark and utilized a 13-4 run to cut the once, 14-point Cornell lead to two points. Dosenko and Steen combined for eight of the 14 points during the run.  

Dartmouth returns home for its annual "Play4Kay" game when Princeton travels to Hanover on Friday (Feb. 10). The game is scheduled for a 7 p.m. tipoff. Dartmouth closes the weekend against Penn on Saturday (Feb. 11). The Big Green and Quakers will also tipoff at 7 p.m. at Leede Arena.

Big Green Sidelines
-Faziah Steen was facing her old high school teammate, Spencer Lane, in tonight's contest. This is the second time she's faced one of her teammates as Harvard's Emma Golen also played with Steen and Lane at Detroit Country Day.

-Dartmouth trailed for the first time in Ivy League action at halftime.

-Steen was in double figures for her 12th consecutive game.