La Salle Shoots Past Women's Hoops, 81-67
Feb. 4, 2012
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - The UMass women's basketball team used a 14-0 run to pull within three of La Salle with 12:52 remaining in the second half and had six players score seven or more, but the effort was not enough in a 81-67 setback to the Explorers on Saturday night at Tom Gola Arena. Both squads shot extremely well on the evening with the Minutewomen (6-17, 1-7 A-10) finishing at 46.9% from the field and La Salle (11-12, 5-3) at 50.9%.
Junior Shakia Robinson paced the UMass offense with 17 points on 8-for-16 shooting to go along with five rebounds. Classmate Jasmine Watson followed with 10 points and five boards, while senior Megan Zullo had nine points, a team-best eight rebounds and six assists. Redshirt freshman Millie Niggeling contributed a career high nine points off the bench and freshman Aisha Rodney added seven. Senior Emilie Teuscher totaled eight points and redshirt sophomore Carolann Cloutier handed out seven assists.
The teams traded buckets early in the first half as the score remained a one-point margin with La Salle holding a 12-11 lead at the 11:52 mark. Then a Jada Payne three helped the Explorers begin a stretch of out-scoring the Minutewomen, 21-8 to build a 15-point advantage, 34-19, with 5:29 to play in the period. UMass closed the half with a 7-3 spurt to close the gap to 11 at the intermission, 37-26.
Cloutier hit the first shot of the second half to bring the Minutewomen to within nine, but La Salle proceeded to score eight straight to expand its advantage back out to 13. Two baskets in a row by Niggeling, however, turned the momentum UMass' way. Her second bucket was the first of three straight treys by the Minutewomen, part of a 14-0 run. Rodney's three-point play with 12:52 remaining made it a three-point game at 45-42.
However, that was as close as the Minutewomen would come as the Explorers countered six straight points to push the margin to nine. UMass could draw no closer than seven the rest of the way as La Salle used nine free throws in the final three minutes to help seal the victory and finished 17-for-20 (85.0%) at the charity stripe compared to the Minutewomen's 3-for-5 (60.0%).
Brittany Wilson's 18 points led four Explorers in double figures, while she handed out a team-high four assists, as well. Michea Bryant and Nadia Duncan totaled 14 points piace, Payne finished with 13 and Ruvanna Campbell grabbed 11 rebounds.
UMass will be back in action on Wednesday, Feb. 8, when the squad will return home to host St. Bonaventure at 5 p.m. in the first half of a UMass Basketball doubleheader vs. the Bonnies.
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