Springfield, Mass. -- November 16, 2010 -- Led by Alexis George, the Worcester State women's basketball team defeated Springfield College, 55-47, tonight at SC's Blake Arena in the season opener for both teams. With the win, the Lancers are now 1-0, while SC falls to 0-1.
A modest 10-1 advantage by Worcester State midway through the second half was enough to allow the Lancers to move from two points down (31-33) to seven points up (41-34) with 8:50 remaining. That's where the game turned.
For Worcester State, George, a senior guard from Worcester, Mass., led her squad with 13 points. She was followed by junior guard Kaleigh Charette (Fairhaven, Mass.) with 11 points, and sophomore center Meaghan O'Keefe (Warren, Mass.) and sophomore guard Kara Rogers (Lowell, Mass.) with 9 points apiece. O'Keefe led all rebounders with 10.
For Springfield, Central Mass. native Abby Connors (Douglas, Mass.), a senior guard, led her team with 15 points, although she was the only one to crack double-digits in points. Junior guard Kelly Murphy (Mechanicville, N.Y.) was next in line with 9 points, followed by junior forward Kelly Slattery (Somers, Conn.) with eight. Sophomore forward Emily Walker (East Lyme, Conn.) was SC's top rebounder with eight, followed by Slattery with seven.
Neither team shot all that well. Worcester State made 20 of 56 shots from the field for a .357 percentage. Springfield went 17 of 57 for a .298 percentage. From three-point range, SC went 4 of 15 for a .267 percentage. In turnovers, the Lancers committed 20, the Pride 18.
Springfield's largest lead of the game came early at 11-6 with 10:12 remaining in the first half. The lead changed hands late in the half, with Worcester State taking a 24-21 advantage on two free throws by junior forward Molly Hein (Hudson, N.H.) with 53 seconds left before the intermission.
In the first 12 seconds of the second half, O'Keefe hit a three-pointer, giving the Lancers a 27-21 lead. Springfield, however, put together a 12-4 run, its best ball of the game, to lead 33-31. When Murphy made a lay-up with 13:54 to go, SC had its last lead.
But then came the 10-1 run by Worcester State. When O'Keefe made a lay-up with 4:32 remaining, Worcester State had its largest lead (52-39). Connors later made a three from straight on, and that cut the Lancer lead to six (53-47), but that was as close as SC would come. A George lay-up with nine seconds left sealed the deal.
Springfield next plays Saturday at 7:30 pm at Brandeis against Rhode Island College in the Brandeis Invitational.