Basketball Drops Heartbreaker to Wheaton in First Game of 2011

Basketball Drops Heartbreaker to Wheaton in First Game of 2011

SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. (Jan. 5, 2011) – With junior Gabbie DePalo leading the way, the Wheaton College women's basketball team overcame a 17-point second half deficit to defeat Mount Holyoke College 54-51 this evening at the Mildred S. Howard Gymnasium. The forward scored all 12 of her points after the break, as Wheaton secured its second NEWMAC win of the season.

Tricia Chase Sophomore guard Angelica Pascual finished with 16 points on 6-of-14 shooting from the floor to lead the way for Mount Holyoke. She was joined in double digits by junior forward Tricia Chase, who recorded 11 points and six rebounds. The Lyons connected on 39.2% (20-51) of their shots from the field and outrebounded Wheaton 35-29. Jennine Vizcaino, Annabel Barrett and Jasmine Brown added six points apiece, and Vizcaino pulled down a career best 10 boards.

First year guard Laura Pierce matched DePalo with 12 points for Wheaton, which drained 40.8% (20-49) of its shots from the floor. The guests also received a boost from first year guard Melissa McLaughlin and sophomore center Natasha Colon Ortiz, who tallied nine points apiece. McLaughlin knocked down all three of her treys during Wheaton's second half explosion.

After falling behind 5-0 in the opening minutes, Mount Holyoke reeled off 10 straight points to gain control of the contest. The Lyons extended their cushion to 26-11 on a three-pointer by Pascual at the 5:07 mark and took a 32-18 advantage into the locker room. Pascual and Pierce each posted nine points before the break.

Mount Holyoke pushed its lead to 35-18 on another three-pointer by Pascual in the early stages of the second stanza. The 17 point spread was the largest of the night. The Lyons enjoyed a 42-28 edge following a layup by Pascual at the 14:03 mark.

Refusing to go away, Wheaton stormed back with a 12-0 run over the next three minutes. DePalo scored six points during the spurt, which also featured a trifecta by McLaughlin and a conventional three-point play by sophomore guard Jeana Trimboli.

Barrett halted the rally with a three-pointer of her own, and Chase put Mount Holyoke in front 47-41 with a short jumper with 9:27 remaining in regulation.

From there, it was all Wheaton. The visitors scored the next nine points and never looked back. They sliced the deficit to one on a three-pointer by McLaughlin and went ahead 48-47 on a layup by Colon Ortiz at the 7:30 mark. Another layup by Colon Ortiz pushed the lead to 54-51 with just under one minute to go.

Mount Holyoke had a chance to send the contest to overtime in the waning seconds, but junior guard Christine Chancy's desperation heave from the top of the arc sailed wide.

Both squads will resume their NEWMAC schedules on Saturday at 2:00 p.m. Mount Holyoke (2-8, 1-4 NEWMAC) will visit perennial power Babson College, while Wheaton (5-6, 2-3 NEWMAC) will travel to WPI.