Worcester, Mass. -- January 16, 2010 -- An 18-point effort from Kelly Slattery and a 12-4 flurry in the last five and a half minutes of the game propelled the Springfield College women's basketball team to a 57-48 victory over Clark University in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference contest this afternoon at Clark's Kneller Athletic Center. With the win, Springfield has won three straight, and is now 7-8 overall, and 5-3 in NEWMAC play.
Meanwhile, the Cougars of Clark fall to 3-12 overall, and 2-6 in league action.
Slattery, a sophomore forward from Somers, Conn., had a game-high 18 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 assists in the game this afternoon. Two others scored in double figures for the Pride. They included junior guard Abby Conners (Douglas, Mass.) with 15 points, 4 rebounds, and 5 assists, and sophomore guard Kelly Murphy (Mechanicville, N.Y.) with 14 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 assists. Murphy finished 6-of-6 from the free throw line. She counted a clutch seven of her 14 points in the last 5:47 of the contest. In addition, junior center Amelia Sapowsky (Ware, Mass.) was credited with 6 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 assists.
For Clark, the only two double-figure scorers were Ivori Aiken with 15 points, followed by Kate Minister with 14. Kelsey Giedyman and Jillian Camilleri tallied 8 points apiece. Camilleri also had a game-high 10 rebounds.
Neither team shot particularly well, each shooting .333 from the floor. Springfield was 19-of-57, while Clark was 21-of-63. Rebounding favored SC, 46-40. Turnovers were about equal -- Clark with 17, SC with 16. The difference came at the free throw line, where the Pride made 14-of-20 (.700), while Clark made thee of just six attempts (.500).
Springfield had the better of it early-on, jumping out to a 10-point lead, its largest of the game, at 19-9 with 10:41 to go in the first half. Clark managed to close the gap to three at 28-25 at the intermission.
Clark scored seven of the first nine points in the second half, and took a two-point lead. The score was later tied at 38-all when Connors hit a 3-pointer with 9:20 to go, giving Springfield the lead for good. But that lead was tenuous as Clark closed to within one point on three occasions, the last with 6:07 to go.
With SC up 45-44, Murphy then hit a 3-pointer with 5:47 to go, putting the Pride up by four, 48-44. Aiken made a lay-up with 5:27 left, cutting it to 48-46, but those would be the last points Clark would score in awhile.
Connors then made one of the biggest shots of the game, a 3-pointer with 4:58 left, and the 5-point margin for SC seemed huge at this stage. Slattery's lay-up with 3:27 left gave the Pride a 7-point bulge at 53-46. And no one would score again until Murphy made two free throws with 48 seconds left, giving SC a 9-point lead at 55-46. An Aiken lay-up with 13 seconds left, and two more free throws by Murphy with two seconds to go closed the scoring.
Springfield will next play at home at Blake Arena Wednesday (Jan. 20) at 7 pm versus Smith.