SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. – Behind a game-best 24 points and 19 rebounds from senior forward Amber Legare, the Mount Holyoke College basketball team posted a 70-54 triumph over the University of Saint Joseph on Saturday afternoon at the Mildred S. Howard Gymnasium. With the win, the Lyons have now won two straight contests, improving to 4-8 on the season. The BlueJays slipped to 5-8 on the year.
Legare (Chicopee, Mass./Chicopee Comprehensive) also added two assists and a block in the game, while senior guard Kate Karraker (Morgantown, W.V./Taft School) had 16 points, a rebound and two assists. Junior guard Genelle Green (Windsor, Conn./Miss Porter's School) chipped in with eight points and 10 rebounds, while senior forward Nicole DeMarchena (Miami, Fla./Amherst Regional) finished just shy of a double-double with nine points, 15 rebounds, two assists and game-highs in both blocks (4) and steals (4).
For USJ, senior guard Brianna Ferraro (Waterbury, Conn./Holy Cross) recorded a team-high 15 points with three caroms, two assists and two steals. Senior forward Heather Framski (Prospect, Conn./Woodland Regional) added 14 points and eight assists, while junior guard Stephanie DeJesus (Meriden, Conn./Wilcox Tech) added eight points, two rebounds and two assists.
The visiting BlueJays notched the game's first bucket on a layup by senior forward Lindsay Feducia (Beacon Falls, Conn./Woodland Regional), but the Lyons quickly answered, going on a 11-0 run for an 11-2 lead at the 13:22 mark. Legare had six points during the run.
USJ continued to keep it close, eventually taking a one-point (16-15) lead with 6:09 to play on a jumper by Framski. The lead was short-lived as an answering three from junior Kelly Stewart (La Canada, Calif./La Canada) made a two-point advantage for the Lyons, who later benefited from trey's by DeMarchena and Karraker for a 28-21 lead at halftime.
In the second half, Mount Holyoke came out firing, building the lead to double-digits less than a minute into the frame on a three from Karraker (33-21). A jumper from Ferraro would cut the USJ deficit back to nine (36-27) with 16:30 on the clock, but MHC continued to answer.
A free throw shot by sophomore Xajaah Williams-Flores (Plymouth, N.H./Holderness School) gave the Lyons their largest lead of the game (56-40) to that point and Mount Holyoke took advantage of several turnovers to maintain the double-figure advantage.
Back-to-back shots by Framski and DeJesus helped pull the BlueJays to within 11 (61-50) with 2:17 remaining, but the Lyons would capitalize on critical USJ fouls down the stretch with seven free throw makes over the final 1:41 to seal the win.
The Lyons, who were solid off the glass with a 58-29 rebounding advantage for the contest, are back in action on Tuesday with a NEWMAC contest at WPI (7pm). Saint Joseph, which shot 53.3% (8-15) from the free throw line, is also back on Tuesday with a GNAC game at Norwich (7pm).