WELLESLEY, Mass. (January 9, 2008) – The Springfield College women's basketball team used tenacious defense and a spread out offensive attack to cruise to a 79-51 win at Wellesley on Wednesday evening. It was the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference opener for both teams.
The win snapped the Pride's three-game losing skid, bringing its record to 5-6 overall, and 1-0 in conference play, while the Blue fell to 3-8, 0-1.
Springfield opened the game with an 8-2 run, pressing right from the very start. Wellesley, however, managed to tie it at 10-all on back-to-back three-pointers. But a three-pointer by freshman guard Rachelle Walker (Lee, Mass.) with 11:57 left in the first half gave Springfield a lead (13-10) it would never relinquish. Wellesley managed to stay within three points (29-26) with three minutes left in the first stanza, but a 10-2 run by SC in the last 2:45 finally gave the Pride some breathing room at the half. Back-to-back threes by senior guard Tara McCarthy (Bristol, R.I.) with 2:18 and 1:53 left were huge. SC led, 39-28, at the intermission.
The Pride then roared out of the locker room, going on a 12-2 run over the opening 3:36 to take a commanding 51-30 lead. Junior forward Corey Finch (Hanover, Pa.) scored six of her 10 points in that span. That run was capped by a Christine Cotter (Stoughton, Mass.) 16-footer. Cotter scored 6 points. Springfield would later lead by as many as 32 in the game (with 5:21 left), employing its pressing defense to create scoring chances. Springfield forced 27 Wellesley turnovers, turning them into 30 points. The Pride shot an outstanding 53% in the second half, while the home Blue managed to connect on just 27% of its shots in the second stanza.
McCarthy led the way for the visitors with 14 points, while teammate Lauren O'Connor (Valhalla, N.Y.) chipped in with 12 points and seven rebounds (she was 5-of-5 from the field). Finch was the only other Springfield player to score in double figures as she tallied 10. A total of 14 different players saw action in the game tonight for the Pride, with 10 of them tallying points. Scoring 8 points apiece were junior center/forward Liz Brosseau (Franklin, Mass.) and freshman center Amelia Sapowsky (Ware, Mass.). The SC bench had its finest game of the season as a unit, scoring 30 of the team's 79 points. Freshman guard/forward Annie Lasek (Southampton, Mass.) added 7 points, and junior guard KK Salmonsen (Beverly, Mass.) added 5.
Springfield returns to action on Saturday afternoon when it travels to take on Worcester State in a non-conference clash. Tip-off is slated for 2:00 pm.