GUAYNABO, P.R. — Bucknell shot 50 percent, led by a 16-point effort from Tessa Brugler, to knock off Howard 70-60 in the first game of the Puerto Rico Clasico on Wednesday.
Bucknell (3-3) held Howard to 3-of-15 (20%) in the final quarter to fend off any attempt at a comeback.
The teams traded leads throughout the first two quarters, as each was hot from the floor. The first quarter was the only one in which Howard outscored Bucknell, sinking 5-of-9 and one from the arc to take a 13-12 lead into the second.
Both teams shot better than 60 percent in the second quarter, but it was Bucknell’s 6-of-9 effort and four made free throws that gave the Bison a 34-27 edge. Bucknell distributed the ball evenly throughout the first half, as three different players posted seven points apiece.
Each team shot 50 percent in the third, but Bucknell went 3-for-3 from the arc and a perfect 6-for-6 at the line to outscore Howard 21-17 in the third. Bucknell also outrebounded Howard 20-12 through the first three quarters.
Bucknell maintained a double-digit lead through the first five minutes of the fourth, but Howard crept within six of tying after forcing four turnovers and keeping the game within reach at the free-throw line. However, solid defensive effort by Bucknell held Howard to only three made field goals and none from the arc on five attempts.
For the game, Bucknell went 6-of-11 (54.5%) from beyond the arc and 10-for-12 from the free-throw line. Ellie Mack added 12 points to the Bison’s efforts and Abby Kapp contributed 11. Carly Krsul matched her career high with six points, and Tai Johnson sank the first 3-pointer of her career. In all, nine Bison scored for Bucknell. Howard was led by Sarah Edmond’s 15 points, two assists, and two steals.
Bucknell returns to Mario Morales Coliseum today for a 2:30 p.m. game versus Cincinnati.