Nov. 20, 2009
BOSTON, MA - Senior guard Caroline Ashe (West Roxbury, MA) netted a career-high 23 points on a 9-12 shooting performance to lead University of Massachusetts Boston women's basketball team over Pine Manor College, 64-31, in the opening round of the 2009 UMass Boston Tip-Off Classic this evening at the Clark Athletic Center on the campus of UMass Boston. The Beacons improve to 1-0 on the season for Head Coach Courtney Mattingly's first career coaching victory in her first season at UMass Boston. The Gators fall to 0-2.
The Beacons will take on Framingham State College in tomorrow's championship game at 3:00 p.m. following the Rams' 86-63 victory over Southern Vermont College, while Pine Manor plays Southern Vermont in the consolation contest at 1:00 p.m.
The Beacons jumped out to an early 7-1 lead capped by a three-point bucket by freshman guard Kate Levy (Falmouth, MA) with 17:13 left to play in the first half. Levy finished the night with nine points, seven rebounds and two assists in her collegiate debut.
Pine Manor would cut the deficit to four with 11:09 to play in the half on a layup by sophomore guard Gina Simpson-Hobbs (Dorchester, MA) to make it 11-7, but it was the closest it would get as UMass Boston closed out the first half on a 29-11 stretch to take a commanding lead into the locker room. Ashe netted 14 of her 23 points in the half to contribute to the Beacons' 40-18 halftime margin. UMass Boston maintained the lead with stifling defense in the second half of play, holding the Gators to only five field goals in the stanza for a 23.8 field goal percentage.
After the squads traded baskets for the first three possessions of the second half to make it a 45-26 game with 12:28 to play, the Beacons opened up their lead by going on a 19-1 run to put the game well out of reach. The run was fueled by sharp shooting from behind the arc as UMass Boston netted five trifectas over an eight minute sequence. Ashe nailed two of the shots from downtown and was 4-7 from behind the arc on the night. Also connecting on two treys was freshman guard Michaela Cunningham (South Boston, MA). The other three-pointer during the run came from the hands of sophomore forward Molly Piette (Webster, MA). A jumper by sophomore guard Kamiya Flakes (Boston, MA) capped the Beacons' run and made it a 64-27 contest with 2:44 to play.
Pine Manor held UMass Boston scoreless over the final 2:44 and reeled off four consecutive points, capped by consecutive layups by junior guard Enjolee Phillips (Hartford, CT) to pull the visitors to within 64-31.
The Beacons dominated the glass for a 56-21 rebound advantage.
Philips led the way for the Gators, dropping 12 points to go along with two steals and an assist. Simpson-Hobbs finished the night as the team's second leading scorer with seven points while sophomore guard Yiafia Dowridge (White Plains, NY) collected a team-high six rebounds in the effort. Piette finished the contest with seven points and six boards for the Beacons, while freshman guard Sarah McDonough (Weymouth, MA) paced the rebounding effort, collecting a game-high of nine boards in the win. Freshman guard Elizabeth Dow (Marshfield, MA) had an impressive all around collegiate debut, grabbing eight rebounds, netting seven points and picking up two assists in the opening win.