Women's Basketball Escapes Harvard, 80-71
Nov. 17, 2006
BURLINGTON, Vt. - Sophomores Jasmine Young and Jessica Slack combined for 39 points to lead East Carolina to an 80-71 win over Harvard in the opening round of the 13th annual TD Banknorth Classic Friday evening on the campus of the University of Vermont. The Lady Pirates improve to 1-1 on the year and will play in the championship game tomorrow evening at 8:00 p.m.
The Crimson opened up an early 9-2 lead, including eight points from Lindsay Hallion. The Lady Pirates fought back, tying the game at 10-10 on an Alicia Person layup with 13:10 on the clock. An Emma Moretzsohn jumper gave Harvard the 12-10 lead before ECU tied the game once again on another Person basket. The Lady Pirates took their first lead of the game, 15-14, on a Slack three-pointer with 11:02 remaining in the half. The lead would change hands four more times over the next three minutes as a pair of Katie Rollins free throws tied the game at 18-18 before the Lady Pirates put together a 7-2 to take the 27-20 lead with 6:08 showing on the clock. Harvard answered, going on an 8-0 run, retaking the lead, 28-27 with less than two minutes to play in the half. Another Slack trey put the Lady Pirates back on top, but it was Harvard who took the 33-30 lead into the break, scoring five straight points to end the half.
Rollins led all scorers with 10 at the break, including eight free throws. Slack led ECU with eight points, going 2-for-3 from behind the arc. Gabriela Husarova led the Lady Pirates with five caroms while Harvard's Christiana Lackner also pulled down five boards.
East Carolina shot 36.1 percent from the field in the opening half while Harvard shot 30.3. The difference in the half, however, was Harvard's 70.6 percent shooting from the charity stripe, going 12-for-17, while the Lady Pirates shot only 33.3 percent, making just one free throw on three attempts.
Harvard opened the second half scoring four straight points, increasing the teams lead to eight with under 18 minutes to play in the game. Young hit back to back three-pointers to pull the Lady Pirates to within four, 40-36 with 17:21 on the clock. The Crimson extended its lead to five on a pair of Hallion free throws with 15:29 to play. The Lady Pirates went on an 11-2 run, giving them the 52-47 lead with 11:20 to play in the game, a lead they would not relinquish for the rest of the contest. A pair of free throws by Nicole Days gave ECU its largest lead of the game, 70-60, with 3:01 remaining. Harvard got within six, but could not get any closer, as ECU held on for the 80-71 victory.
Young led all scorers with 22 points, going 4-of-8 from behind the arc, adding six assists and five steals in the win. Slack also scored in double figures with 17 points, going 3-for-5 from downtown, and a perfect 6-for-6 from behind the charity stripe. She and Husarova each pulled down a team-high seven rebounds. Rollins and Niki Finelli led the Crimson with 19 points each, while Rollins added 10 rebounds for the double-double.
Despite arriving to Burlington at 4 a.m. on Friday morning due to travel delays, the Pirates outshot the Crimson 41.8 percent to 38.5 percent. ECU outrebounded Harvard 48-39 and forced 17 turnovers.
"I was pleased we were able to come out with a victory tonight," head coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener said. "It certainly wasn't a pretty game, but we made some big shots and hit our free throws down the stretch to seal the deal."
In a tale of two halves, the Lady Pirates, who attempted only three free throws in the opening half, hit 15-of-19 in the second, finishing the game with shooting 72.7 percent. Harvard, however, hit 12 free throws in the first half and was only sent to the charity stripe seven times in the second half, finishing the night shooting 66.7 percent.
"We were very flat in the first half; we looked very tired," Baldwin-Tener added. "We regrouped in the second half; we had more energy and we were able to force more turnovers."
The Lady Pirates return to action Saturday, Nov. 18 as they participate in the championship game of the TD Banknorth Classic. ECU will face either Holy Cross or Vermont in an 8:00 p.m. tip-off. from Patrick Gymnasium.