WORCESTER, Mass. - The Wheaton College women's basketball team led 58-50 with less than seven minutes to play at New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) foe Clark University on Tuesday, but the Cougars responded with a game-ending 16-4 run and 66-62 victory in the Kneller Athletic Center.
The Lyons slip below the .500 mark overall and in league play at 3-4 and 1-2, respectively, while Clark ended a four-game losing streak to improve to 2-5 and 1-2.
Wheaton sophomore Jana Jagodzinski (Old Greenwich, Conn./Greenwich) recorded season highs of 16 points and eight rebounds, shooting 8-of-14 from the floor, while classmate Jeana Trimboli (Norwalk, Conn./Trinity Catholic) contributed 11 points with five assists and three steals. Sophomore Gabby Barbera (Ridgewood, N.J./Ridgewood) finished with eight markers, while freshman Laura Pierce (Hampstead, N.H./Pinkerton Academy) matched her season best with eight assists.
Freshman Emily Reilly (Marlboro, Mass./Marlboro) led the hosts with 20 points. Sophomore Kelsey Giedymin (Shrewsbury, Mass./Shrewsbury) and freshman Ashleigh Condon (Hull, Mass./Hull) posted 13 and 11 points, respectively, while first-year Esther Cohn (Carrboro, N.C./Carolina Friends School) pulled down a game-high 10 rebounds.
With the score knotted at 50 approaching the midway point of the second half, Wheaton sandwiched a pair of threes from Barbera and junior Nicole Cullinane (Rindge, N.H./New Hampton School) around a Jagodzinski lay-in for the eight-point edge at 7:20. The Lyons led 60-55 at 5:33 and 62-61 at 1:14, but a Reilly jumper with 52 ticks on the clock provided Clark with the lead for good. Reilly also knocked down two clinching freebies with three seconds left.
Wheaton took advantage of its interior presence to open the game, as Jagodzinski and sophomore Natasha Colon Ortiz (Holyoke, Mass./Holyoke) combined for four lay-ups in giving the Lyons an 8-4 edge 2:30 in. The hosts answered in a big way, rattling off 13 unanswered points for a 17-8 advantage at 12:51. The Blue and White slowly chipped away at its deficit before eventually taking a 30-29 edge on a Jagodzinski bucket with 1:26 left before the break. However, Clark scored the stanza's final five points for a 34-30 halftime edge.
Wheaton will play in its final game of the first semester on Friday night by hosting NEWMAC opponent Springfield College at 7:00 p.m.