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Smith's Strong Second Half Decisive in Defeating Springfield, 61-49

Kelly Slattery Box Score

Northampton, Mass. -- January 19, 2011 -- Despite 20 points and eight rebounds from the Pride's Kelly Slattery, the Smith College women's basketball team defeated its counterparts from Springfield College, 61-49, tonight in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference game..

With the win, Smith is now 8-6 overall, 5-3 in the NEWMAC. Springfield is now 5-11 overall, 5-4 in the conference.

Springfield led at the half, 29-25. But a 16-2 run by Smith to start the second half proved decisive.

Slattery, a junior forward from Somers, Conn., was the only member of the Pride to score in double figures. Her 20 points came on 10-of-14 shooting from the floor. Besides her eight rebounds, she also had two steals and one assist.

Up next for the Pride was senior co-captain Abby Connors (Douglas, Mass.) with nine points. She was 3-for-6 from 3-point range. Sophomore center Emily Walker (East Lyme, Conn.) followed with eight points and a team-high 10 rebounds. Senior guard and co-captain Kelly Murphy (Mechanicville, N.Y.) had six points, but could not find the range from the floor, going 2-for-14 in a tough shooting night.

Smith was led by Lizzy BelBruno with 14 points. She also had four steals, two rebounds, and two assists. Behind BelBruno was Amanda Zakoske with 12 points and a team-high 10 rebounds, followed by Sydney Parkmond with 10 points and eight rebounds. Rosa Drummond added eight points and five rebounds.

In the first 10 minutes of the game, SC was shooting upwards of 60 percent from the field, but that leveled off to 48 percent by halftime. Meanwhile, Smith was shooting 29 percent at the half. But in the second half, those numbers completely turned around. In the second stanza alone, Smith shot 47.8 percent, while Springfield shot 21.9 percent. And therein lies the story.

After that opening second-half 16-2 run by Smith, the Pioneers led 41-31 with 15:18 left in the contest. The closest Springfield was able to get after that was four at 41-37 with 12:28 left. It was still a five-point game at 47-42 with 8:59 to go, but Smith then slowly pulled away.

This Saturday (Jan. 22), Springfield hosts league-power Babson, still unbeaten, in Blake Arena at 1 pm.

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Head Coach Naomi Graves

Naomi Graves Entering her 23rd season as head coach in 2013-14, Naomi Graves has directed her squads to an impressive 323-261 record (.553 winning percentage). Since joining the Division III ranks in 1995, Graves has led the Pride to 12 post-season bids in the past 18 years, including five berths in the NCAA Division III Tournament. Read more.

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