No. 19 Tufts wears down women’s basketball team, 61-46
|Co-captain Meg Coffin ’08 led the Bobcats with 15 points.|
LEWISTON, Maine — No. 19 nationally ranked Tufts University exerted defensive dominance en route to a 61-46 NESCAC women’s basketball victory at Bates College on Saturday afternoon.
The Jumbos (16-1, 2-1 NESCAC) held the host Bobcats (10-6, 1-2) to 24.6 percent shooting in the game, including 18.8 percent in the first half, allowing Tufts to build a 28-15 lead at the half and wear Bates down the rest of the way. Tufts entered the weekend ranked in the top 15 nationally in field goal percentage and in rebounding margin, and the Jumbos outperformed the Bobcats 51-34 on the glass, Bates’ worst margin this season by seven rebounds.
Tufts first-year guard Colleen Hart (Needham, Mass.) was the lone Jumbo to score in double figures, with 17 ponits to go wtih 5 assists. Three Jumbos entered double figures in rebounds: senior Khalilah Ummah (Litchfield, Maine) and junior Katie Tausanovitch (Lyme, N.H.) with 12 apiece, and senior Jenna Gomez (Norfolk, Mass.) with 10. Ummah scored 9 points, while Gomez, Tausanovitch, junior Kim Moynihan (West Hartford, Conn.) and sophomore Casey Sullivan (Berlin, Conn.) all added eight apiece.
Bates senior Meg Coffin (Westford, Mass.) led the Bobcats with 15 points but was held to 4 rebounds, well under her average. Junior Val Beckwith (Woburn, Mass.) scored 12 points with a team-high 9 rebounds, and senior Sarah Barton (Portsmouth, N.H.) dished out 9 assists.
Tausanovitch hit a layup on a Moynihan assist with 11:27 to play in the first half, giving Tufts a lead, at 9-8, that the Jumbos wouldn’t relinquish. Tufts held Bates scoreless from the 13:44 mark to the 7:30 mark of the first period, then allowed only five more points for the rest of the period while building a lead as high as 14 (28-14) before intermission. The numbers at the break told a cold tale for Bates, which shot 0-8 behind the arc and 3-9 at the foul line in the period.
Bates turned its fortunes around at the free-throw line in the second half, hitting 12 of 14 attempts, while trying to claw back into the game. But the Bobcats remained cold from long range (1-5) and wasn’t much warmer from the field, hitting 9 of 29 shots (.310). Bates closed the gap to as low as eight points, when a pair of free throws by sophomore Danielle Schaefers (Barrington, R.I.) made it 35-27 with 13:41 to play. But a quick 7-2 spurt, featuring a steal and a pair of layups by Sullivan, nudged the Tufts lead back to 15 (44-29) with under 10 minutes to play. Bates cut the lead back to 10 (52-42) with 2:38 left but couldn’t find the firepower to make up the entire deficit. Gomez scored five straight points and Hart canned all four of her foul shots in the final minute to seal the win.
Bates has a non-league game at Wentworth Institute of Technology on Tuesday at 7 p.m.; Tufts will next play at Connecticut College on Friday, Feb. 1 at 7 p.m.