January 17, 2011

Cold shooting night dooms Wheaton at regional power Tufts

MEDFORD, Mass. - The Wheaton College women's basketball team shot just 17.2 percent during a 64-34 non-conference loss on Monday night at regional power Tufts University in Cousens Gymnasium.

Due to this past Saturday's postponement against visiting Smith College, the Lyons played for the sixth straight time on the road, falling to 6-8 overall.  The Jumbos, who are receiving national votes in the most recent D3hoops.com poll, improved to 11-2.

Sophomore Jeana Trimboli (Norwalk, Conn./Trinity Catholic) and freshman Lauren McClelland (Scituate, Mass./Notre Dame) paced Wheaton with six points each.  Trimboli also had three boards and two steals, while McClelland grabbed four boards as a reserve.

Junior Gabbie DePalo (Rumson, N.J./Rumson-Fair Haven Regional) finished with five points and four rebounds, and classmate Nicole Cullinane (Rindge, N.H./New Hampton School) had five markers, three boards and two assists.

For Tufts, which shot 40 percent from the floor, was led by senior Colleen Hart's (Needham, Mass./Needham) 13 points, seven rebounds and four steals.  Freshman Ali Rocchi (Fairfield, Conn./Fairfield Warde) rounded out the double-figure scorers with 10 points.  Sophomore Sam Tye (Newton, Mass./Newton South) and freshman Liz Moynihan (Storrs, Conn./E.O. Smith) each had seven markers and seven caroms.

The Lyons hung around early in trailing 9-4 with 13:37 remaining in the opening half, but the hosts scored seven straight points for a double-digit advantage at 16-4 at 11:43.  After a McClelland jumper made the score 16-6 approaching the midway point of the frame, Tufts reeled off 10 unanswered for a commanding 26-6 lead with less than eight minutes to play before the break.  Wheaton experienced a stretch of four-plus minutes without scoring but did manage 15 points in the final 6:29 to trail 37-21 at the intermission.

The Jumbos began the second stanza on an 8-0 run for a 45-21 cushion at 17:41.  Two DePalo freebies at 16:49 brought the Lyons within 22 but Wheaton would get no closer, as Tufts pushed its advantage out to 29 three times, including at 59-30 with 6:30 remaining.  The Blue and White scored the next four points but it proved to be too little too late.     

Tonight marked Wheaton's final non-league game of the regular season.  The Lyons host New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) opponent Wellesley College on Wednesday at 7:00 p.m.

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