Springfield, Mass. -- January 3, 2011 -- Liz Moynihan scored 14 points to lead her Tufts University women's basketball team to the championship over Rensselaer in the Hampton Inn West Springfield/Naismith Classic tonight at Springfield College's Blake Arena. In the consolation game, Courtney Cirillo scored 18 points to lead her Keene State College team to a 63-57 victory over Springfield College. Kelly Murphy topped the Pride with 14 points in that game.
Game #1 -- Consolation Game
Keene State 63, Springfield 57
With the win, Keene State raised its record to 4-6, while Springfield fell to 3-8.
Cirillo and Murphy were named to the all-tournament team.
Cirillo, a junior forward from Windsor Locks, Conn., tallied a game-high 18 points, adding eight rebounds, three assists, and two steals. Two others also scored in double figures for the Owls. They were junior guard Sara Laudano (North Haven, Conn.) with 16 points, and junior guard Meghan Farrell (Chester, Vt.) with 10 points. Laudano was 8-for-10 from the free throw line. Farrell added to her line with five rebounds, two steals, two blocks, and one assist.
For Springfield, two others reached double figures in scoring. They were sophomore forward Emily Walker (East Lyme, Conn.) and junior forward Kelly Slattery (Somers, Conn.). Each had 10 points and nine rebounds. Walker also added two assists, one block, and one steal. She was 4-of-8 from the floor. Murphy, a junior from Mechanicville, N.Y., wound up with three assists, three steals, two rebounds, and one block to go along with her team-high 14 points.
This was a game where Keene State was ahead the vast majority of the time. Springfield had two point leads on three occasions -- at 2-0, 4-2, and 6-4, the latter with 17:52 left in the first half. The remainder of the first half saw both teams go on big runs. The Owls took a seemingly commanding lead at 25-12 on a 3-pointer by freshman guard Ashley Moussete (Southampton, Mass.) with 7:14 left. But SC came all the way to tie it at 27-all with exactly one minute remaining on a 3-pointer by Abby Connors (Douglas, Mass.). Farrell then gave Keene State a two-point lead with a short jumper just three seconds before the half, and Keene State led 29-27.
Walker tied the game at 29-all just 20 seconds into the second half. But a bucket by Siobhan Carnell, a sophomore forward from Quincy, Mass., put the Owls into the lead for good with 18:32 left. With 2:56 remaining, the Owls had their largest lead at 60-45. A 12-3 run by Springfield closed the gap to six by game's end.
Game #2 -- Championship Game
Tufts 78, RPI 59
In the title game, Tufts raised its record to 8-1, while RPI fell to 4-7.
Tufts did its damage tonight by spreading the wealth. Four players scored in double figures for the Jumbos. They were Moynihan, a freshman guard from Storrs, Conn., with 14; junior forward Kate Barnosky (Huntington Station, N.Y.) with 13 points; freshman forward Ali Rocchi (Fairfield, Conn.) with 12 points; and sophomore guard Collier Clegg (Evanston, Ill.) with 10. Sophomore forward Bre Dufault (Hampden, Mass.) added nine points.
RPI was led by two players who scored in double figures. They included senior guard Linda Larsen (Kobenhavn, Denmark) with 14 points; and junior guard Sarah Wetmore (Sudbury, Mass.) with 13. Senior guard Allison Connor (Hudson, N.Y.) was next with seven points. Wetmore had a team-high nine rebounds.
Despite not being among the leading scorers tonight, senior guard Colleen Hart (Needham, Mass.) was named the tournament MVP for the Jumbos. Hart scored a game-high 14 points in Tufts' 45-29 victory over Keene State last night.
Also making the all-tournament team from Tufts was junior guard Tiffany Kornegay (Carver, Mass.) , who scored five points, but added a game-high 11 rebounds tonight.
Making the all-tournament team from RPI were Larsen and Wetmore. The final two members of the all-tournament team were Courtney Cirillo from Keene State and Kelly Murphy from Springfield.
After an initial bucket by Wetmore for RPI, Tufts took command thereon out. A 3-pointer by Dufault gave the Jumbos the lead for good at 3-2 with 18:19 left in the first half. A lay-up by Rocchi, a jumper by Moynihan, and another jumper by Rocchi gave Tufts a 9-2 lead with 16:08 left, and the Jumbos were off to the races.
Tufts led by 13 on two occasions in the first half, at 36-23 and 38-25. A three-pointer by junior guard Laura Easterling (Ventura, Calif.) with three seconds left cut the lead to 38-28 at the half.
Tufts shot .533 (16-of-30) in that first half to take control. It also outrebounded the Engineers, 19-14.
In the second half, the lead grew to as many as 26 points at 63-37 with 9:43 to go on a 3-pointer by Moynihan. Tufts still led by as many as 24 points with 1:31 left (78-54) on a 3-pointer by Dufault.
Tufts wound up shooting .508 from the field for the contest. It made an outstanding 11-of-16 from three-point range (.688) overall.
Colleen Hart, Tufts (MVP)
Tiffany Kornegay, Tufts
Linda Larsen, RPI
Sarah Wetmore, RPI
Courtney Cirillo, Keene State
Kelly Murphy, Springfield