Massachusetts Drops Atlantic 10 Conference Opener At VCU
Jan. 2, 2014
RICHMOND, Va. - University of Massachusetts women's basketball was unable to keep pace with the shooting of an on-target Virginia Commonwealth University squad as VCU defeated the Minutewomen, 112-54 at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Richmond, Va., on Thursday.
Jasmine Harris led the Minutewomen with 15 points and added four rebounds to go with a pair of steals. Kim Pierre-Louis ended the contest one rebound shy of a double-double with 11 points and nine boards. Kiara Bomben provided eight points, five rebounds and a pair of assists.
Atlantic 10 Conference leading scorer Robyn Parks paced VCU with 22 points while Adaeze Alaeze earned 21 and Jessica Pellechio provided 18 on six three-pointers.
VCU (13-1, 1-0 Atlantic 10) hit seven of its first eight field goal attempts, including a trio of three-pointers, to race out to a 17-3 lead with 16 minutes, 47 seconds left in the opening half. The Rams offense did not let up throughout the frame as the squad finished 24-of-38 from the floor (63.2 percent) to hold a 62-19 advantage entering the break.
Pierre-Louis netted eight of her points in the second half to surpass double-figures in scoring for the ninth time this season and sixth during the previous seven contests.
Five of those points came in succession over a span of only 27 seconds. The Ottawa, Ontario, native was hit while converting a jumper and drained the ensuing free throw to make it 73-34 in favor of VCU at the 13:45 mark. She drew another foul on the next UMass (3-12, 0-1) trip down the court and swished both attempts from the charity stripe.
However, the Rams continued their accurate shooting from the floor during the remainder of the game as the home squad finished 41-of-80 overall (51.3 percent) and 14-for-32 from beyond the arc (43.8 percent).
Massachusetts shot 29.1 percent (16-for-55) and finished 4-of-16 on three-point attempts (25.0 percent). UMass was 18-for-32 on free throws (56.3 percent) while VCU went 16-of-25 on foul shots (66.7 percent).
The Minutewomen host Fordham (12-2, 1-0) for their next contest, a Sunday, Jan. 5 contest at the Mullins Center in Amherst, Mass., at 2 p.m.