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Women’s basketball team defeats Colby and looks ahead to more conference play

January 27, 2023

Courtesy of Brian Beard
ONCE IN A MILLENNIUM: Sela Kay ’22 competes against a Williams College defender. Kay scored her 1000th career point last week and led the Polar Bears with 14 points in their conference win against Colby College on Saturday.

The women’s basketball team (13-6; 2-3 NESCAC) defeated Colby College (7–10; 2–3 NESCAC) 52–43 on Saturday. The game was close throughout the first half, but Bowdoin took over in the third quarter and went on a 12–0 run. The Polar Bears look to carry the winning streak into this evening, when they face Connecticut College (6–11; 0–4 NESCAC). Bowdoin’s five final games of the regular season, including the game against Connecticut College, will all be against NESCAC opponents.

Guard Sela Kay ’22 led Bowdoin with 14 points and attributed the win to the team’s ability to adjust throughout the game.

“We knew the personnel going into the game, and so obviously we had ideas of who might get hot or who they would look to go to, but I also think we did a good job making adjustments once they started,” Kay said. “At halftime, it was a one point game, and we just talked a lot about focusing up and sharpening up our transition defense and making sure we kept moving the ball to find the gaps in their defense.”

Forward Jess Giorgio ’23, who had eight points and five rebounds against Colby, believes that an essential component to Bowdoin’s success in any game is their confidence.

“I think we’ve been talking a lot about playing with confidence and how our energy feeds off of each other and our competence feeds off each other,” Giorgio said. “I think that a lot of times, confidence also comes from our defense. Our defense creates our offense, and when we were getting stopped in steals, that’s when we were playing with the most confidence on the offensive end.”

Kay was also playing with more confidence—she had just scored her 1000th career point the game before against Husson University. For Kay, the milestone said more about the team as a whole than her as an individual.

“I think [1000 points] really is just something that comes with playing with such great players in terms of having the opportunity to work with great leaders on the teams that I played for in the past at Bowdoin and point guards who can assist the basketball and people who know just how to move the ball around.… I think Bowdoin is really unique in that you know you’re gonna play whatever role that the coaches find for you,” Kay said.

The team is already focused on getting to its next milestone: the NESCAC playoffs. Guard Sydney Jones ’25, who tallied 12 points on Saturday, said that a lot is still up in the air in terms of conference play.

“Right now the NESCAC is a little bit jumbled because a lot of teams are winning really important games and also dropping really important games,” Jones said. “I think it’s going to be interesting at the end of the season to see who comes out on top in the regular season and in the playoffs, too.”

In the meantime, Bowdoin intends to continue to work out the small details that can make a big difference in a game. The team’s defense has been consistently strong. Its shooting average was 37 percent against Colby, which is fairly consistent with the season’s average.

Moving forward, the Polar Bears believe that the intensity of their defense creates a good foundation for their next games.

“It doesn’t really matter what school they’re coming from. We’re all really successful teams at this point,” Jones said. “[We are] going into a game with that mindset and know that a lot of our strength is coming from our defense. If we keep up a defensive intensity, we can get points on the board even if our shots aren’t falling and keep that calmness when we’re in situations that might not be going so well.”

The team is working to take the final stretch of its season one game at a time.

“We are taking everything in stride and just really believing in the mission that our coaches have and carrying it out. I’m looking forward to these last few games and then planning on making a good run into the playoffs,” Kay said. “We have five more regular season games, but I don’t think those will be our last.”

Bowdoin will compete against Connecticut College tonight in New London, Conn.


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