By Hannah Yoshinaga
A career-high 22 points from junior forward Maren Durant and a game-leading 24 from junior guard Sydney Johnson were not enough for BU women’s basketball to stay undefeated in conference play Saturday, and the Terriers fell 79-67 to Lehigh on the road.
The matchup was the teams’ first meeting since the Mountain Hawks defeated the Terriers 64-54 in the 2021 Patriot League Tournament to earn an NCAA Tournament berth.
BU kept the score close early in the first quarter, trading buckets with Lehigh and forcing four quick turnovers. However, the Terriers were unable to counter a 15-6 run by the Mountain Hawks in the last five minutes, ending the period down 22-12.
Durant helped to keep BU in the hunt in the second, but Lehigh’s Megan Walker and Emma Grothaus extended the Mountain Hawks’ lead in the final moments of the half.
Entering the third quarter down by 12, Durant, Johnson and junior guard Maggie Pina cut the lead to single digits. The Mountain Hawks responded with a 13-6 run to gain their biggest lead of the game, 16 points.
The Terriers entered the fourth with a seven-point deficit, but Durant kept the score close in the first few minutes with a layup. Senior forward Emily Esposito subsequently made three consecutive shots, bringing the score to 62-58.
A three by Walker later brought Lehigh’s lead to 11 points. BU never trailed by fewer than six points for the remainder of the contest, unable to hit a shot in the final 1:39 of the contest.
Outside of Durant and Johnson, the Terriers struggled to connect from the field. The remaining six players who saw action in the game combined to go 9-for-33.
Gathering rebounds also proved problematic, with Lehigh maintaining a 46-34 advantage on the boards.
The Mountain Hawks’ Walker finished with a team-high 20 points. Grothaus secured a double-double, her fifth of the season and second against a Patriot League opponent, with 17 points and 13 rebounds.
BU’s only win against Lehigh since February 2019 was a one-point home victory on Feb. 26, 2020.
The Terriers have a four-day break until they return home to face Lafayette on Wednesday at 6 p.m.