Lyons off to best start in program history at 10-0
NORTON, Mass. – Wheaton College, who is among teams receiving votes in the USA Today Sports Top-25 Women's Basketball Coaches' poll, defeated Roger Williams University, 72-59, to claim its tenth-straight win of the season on Thursday evening at Emerson Gymnasium.
The Lyons (10-0, 5-0 NEWMAC) are off to their best start in program history breaking previous marks of 9-0 during their 1991-92 campaign and 8-0 in 1994-95. Roger Williams falls to 7-2 overall.
Wheaton sophomore forward Kiley Shoemaker (Fayetteville, N.Y./Fayetteville-Manlius) guided the squad offensively in the second half with 16 points and five rebounds en route to her team-leading fourth double-double of the season (24 points, 14 rebounds). Shoemaker also had five blocks, shot 8-for-13 from the floor and 6-for-6 at the line. Junior forward Abbie Brickley (Sandy, Utah/Skyline) paced all scorers with 24 points on 8-of-14 shooting from the field and a perfect 8-for-8 showing at the line to go along with seven boards, one steal and one assist.
Sophomore guard Rebecca Arnone (Litchfield, N.H./Campbell) contributed ten points, six rebounds, four assists and two steals, while junior guard Laura Pierce (Hampstead, N.H./Pinkerton Academy) had a game-high seven assists, three rebounds and four points. Senior forward Lauren McClelland (Scituate, Mass./Notre Dame Academy) provided a spark off the bench for the Lyons with six points, seven rebounds, one block, an assist and a steal. McClelland scored all six of her points in the second half and also grabbed five rebounds including two on the offensive glass.
Roger Williams' senior combo guard Kaitlyn Bovee (Berlin, Conn./Berlin) notched a team-high 13 points and nine rebounds. Sophomore guard Angelica Ariola (Prospect, Conn./Holy Cross) tallied ten points and hauled in four caroms, while junior Amanda Keane (Wilmington, Mass./Wilmington) registered eight points, seven rebounds, four assists and three steals.
The Lyons shot 44.8-percent (26-for-58) from the field including 53.8-percent (14-for-26) in the second stanza and 90.0-percent (18-for-20) at the charity stripe. Roger Williams went 31.7-percent (20-for-63) from the floor and 71.4-percent (15-for-21) at the line. Wheaton held a 44-36 differential on the boards, a 15-9 margin in points off turnovers and a 44-26 gap in points in the paint. The Hawks' bench delivered a 20-8 scoring differential in the contest for the vistors.
Wheaton trailed by as many as eight points with 5:50 to play in the first half after Bovee buried a jumper to make it a 22-14 lead. The Lyons answered with a 17-9 to even the score at 31-31 headed into the break marking the first time all season the Blue and White did not lead at the half. Brickley led the way with a team-high seven points during the run, Shoemaker compiled six points and Pierce and junior guard Kirsten Ferrari (Lynn, Mass./Saint Mary's) added two points apiece to account for the scoring.
In the second half, Wheaton claimed its first and only lead of the game utilizing a 6-0 run to begin the frame and never looked back jumping out to a 50-38 advantage at the 9:47 mark. Shoemaker and Arnone were the difference during the offensive outburst as the duo combined for 17 points before Brickley capped the run with a pair of free throws.
The Lyons maintained their ten-point advantage for the remainder of the contest after Shoemaker swished two free throws at 11:40 eventually pushing the gap to as many as 16 (70-54) with 1:27 to go.
Wheaton visits Coast Guard Academy on Saturday, January 4 in a clash of the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference's (NEWMAC) unbeaten teams at 1 p.m. Roger Williams hosts Western New England University this Saturday at 1 p.m.