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Jacques Leads Women's Basketball to 58-43 Win Over Bates in Hampton Inn West Springfield/Naismith Classic

Springfield, Mass - December 31, 2018 - Behind a career-best 19 points from junior guard Emily Jacques (Auburn, Maine), the Springfield College women's basketball team earned a 58-43 win over Bates in the opening round of the Hampton Inn West Springfield/Naismith Classic, hosted in Blake Arena on Monday afternoon. This marks the 24th-consecutive year that Springfield College has hosted the Naismith Classic, as Hampton Inn West Springfield has been the official sponsor of the tournament for the last 10 seasons.

With the win, the Pride improves to 7-4 overall, while Bates falls to 3-4 on the year. Springfield College now advances to the Championship of the Classic, and will await the winner of Vassar College and Newbury College, which tips off at 3 p.m.

Springfield College, which shot 26-for-55 (47.3%) on the afternoon, was led by Jacques with 19 points to go along with eight rebounds, while Gracie Restituyo (Barrington, R.I.) finished with 14 points and eight boards in the win. Alex Goslin (South Windsor, Conn.) also had 11 points, three rebounds, three assists and two steals in the win. Off the bench, Allie Brennan (North Haven, Conn.) played 18 minutes and had four points and four rebounds.

Bates, which was limited to just 14-for-49 (28.6%) from the field, was led by Ariana Dalia (Brick, N.J.), who had 10 points, while Meghan Graff (South Portland, Maine) chipped in with seven points, five assists and two steals.

Springfield College owned a 39-29 advantage on the glass in the win, while the Pride dominated the paint, owning a 40-10 scoring advantage down low.  

Junior forward Taylor Hall (Tolland, Conn.) would score the game's first basket, before Bates answered with three points of its own, capped by a free throw from Julia Middlebrook (Ridgefield, Conn.) at the 7:42 mark of the first quarter. With 5:24 to play, Goslin converted a lay-up, before Jacques followed with one of her own, but Bates responded with back-to-back baskets from Dalia and  Taylor McVeigh (Hanson, Mass.) to take an 8-6 advantage. From there, Amanda Carr (West Haven, Conn.) and Restituyo would convert their chances to give the Pride a 10-8 advantage, before Jacques pushed Springfield College's lead to four with a left-handed lay-up to make it 12-8, maroon and white. Bates would end the quarter on a basket from Melanie Binkhorst (West Hartford, Conn.), giving the Pride a two-point lead at the break.

Jacques and Restitutyo would convert back-to-back lay-ups to kick off the second quarter, opening a six-point lead for the Pride, before Binkhorst canned a three-pointer to pull Bates back to within three. A basket from Goslin with 6:12 to play in the first half sparked a 6-0 run for the Pride, as a tough lay-up from Restituyo with 4:48 to play gave Springfield College a nine-point lead. From there, Bates would score consecutive baskets to cut its deficit to five, before another basket from Restituyo at the 3:24 mark pushed the Pride's lead back to seven, making it 26-19. Bates would end the half's scoring, as a lay-up  from Dalia made it a five-point, 26-21 game at the break.

Jacques opened the second half with a lay-up which was followed by baskets from Goslin and Restituyo, giving the Pride a 32-23 lead at the 5:53 mark of the third quarter, before a pair of free throws from Amaari Williams (Brooklyn, N.Y.) cut the Bobcats' lead back to seven. Jacques would answer with a lay-up at the 3:05 mark of the frame, before draining a deep jumper to push Springfield College's lead to 11, making it 36-25. After Bates' Erika Lamere (Weston, Mass.) hit a three to pull the visitors back to within eight, Brennan and Grace Dzindolet (Holliston, Mass.) would convert their chances to open up an 11-point, 40-29 advantage for the Pride heading to the fourth.

A quarter-opening lay-up Restituyo on a great feed from Goslin opened a 13-point lead for the Pride, but Bates would pull back to within nine following baskets from Graff and Williams, before Jacques knocked down a jumper and followed with a tough lay-up in transition to push her total to 18 points, giving the Pride a 48-35 lead with 5:17 to play. From there, Bridget Reddington (Portland, Conn.) and Brennan would each make lay-ups, and Goslin sealed the game with five free throws down the stretch to help the Pride cruise to victory.

Game 2 -- Vassar 88, Newbury 57

Springfield, Mass. - December 31, 2018 - The Vassar College women's basketball team had five student-athletes reach double digits in the scoring column, as the Brewers defeated Newbury College, 88-57, in the Hampton Inn West Springfield/Naismith Classic, hosted at Springfield College's Blake Arena on Monday afternoon.

With the win, Vassar improves to 7-2 on the year and will advance to take on Springfield College in the championship bout, which will tip off at 3 p.m. With the loss, Newbury is now 5-5 overall and will take on Bates at 1 p.m. in the consolation game.

Vassar, which shot a blistering 32-of-66 (48.5%) from the field, owned a 49-37 advantage in rebounds, while the Brewers bench outscored Newbury's 32-5. The Nighthawks were just 20-of-61 (32.8%) from the field in the setback.

The Brewers were led by 16 points, five steals and two assists from Isa Peczuh (Willington, Conn.), while Dani Douglas (Kalispell, Mont.) had 14 points off the bench, including four three pointers. Sophie Nick (Denver, Colo.) finished with 12 points and nine boards in the win. For Newbury, Jaymesha Sanders (West Haven, Conn.) had a game-high 18 points to go along with nine boards, while Savannah Olsen (Battle Creek, Mich.) had 13 points in the setback.

Vassar jumped out to an early 7-0 lead following a lay-up from Maddie Leong (Atascadero, Calif.) just 1:03 into the contest, before a jumper from Jaymesha Sanders (West Haven, Conn.) and a free throw from Tatianna Occena (Spring Valley, N.Y.) made it a four-point game with 8:06 on the clock. From there, the Brewers would go on a 17-0 run, which was capped by a three pointer from Douglas with 2:38 to play in the first quarter, giving Vassar a 24-3 lead. Meechie Manuel (Mobile, Ala.) would hit a jumper at the 2:17 mark to end Vassar's run, but a pair of free throws from Natalie Pettirossi (Weston, Mass.) gave the Brewers a 30-6 lead at the end of one.

Newbury kept pace with Vassar to open the second quarter, as Taylor Kelly (North Billerica, Mass.) hit a lay-up that made it 36-12 at the 8:00 mark, before a three-point play from Sanders made it 48-20, Vassar, with 2:29 on the clock. Following a three pointer from Kelley, Leong canned a jumper, but Sanders answered with a bucket of her own to send the Brewers into the break with a 53-23 advantage.

At the 5:47 mark of the third quarter, Peczuh hit a lay-up to make it 61-30, Vassar, before a triple from Douglas at the 2:36 mark made it 70-34, Brewers. Olsen and Occena hit free throws in the late stages of the contest to pull the Nighthawks within 22 points, but Vassar would hold on for the victory.