Gators Shut Down Vermont Tech, Earn 51-41 Victory

Box Score to follow

RANDOLPH CENTER, V.T. -- Pine Manor College Women's Basketball turned in its best defensive effort of the season, holding host Vermont Tech to just 41 points to earn a 51-41 victory and improve their overall record to 8-9 on the season. Vermont Tech drops to 8-12 on the season.

From the very beginning it was obvious the game was going to be a contest decided by defense. Both teams sat back in zone defenses, a 3-2 for Pine Manor and 2-3 for Vermont Tech, goading the other to shoot. The strategies worked for each as the Knights and Gators continuously settled for outside shots and contested inside jumpers. The score at the half was PMC 24, VTC 17.

The Lady Knights came out hard in the second half, jumping on the visitors early. They brought their deficit down to just a single point within the first 2 minutes. Ama Baker (Jr./Fitchburg, MA) and Kelly Vellek (Sr./Burlington, VT) spearheaded the attack. Baker scored 6 and Vellek contributed 2 in an 8-2 run to begin the half. Vellek finished the game leading all scorers with 20.

The Gators, however, threw on a full court press that created quick turnovers and easy baskets. Sybil Lynch hit a three pointer, followed closely by a Natasia Franklin jumper and a Alexis Lee three pointer. Just like that the Pine Manor lead was 9, and they never looked back. Lynch led the Gators in scoring with 12.

At the 12:39 mark in the second period, the Lady Knights' starting point guard Baker fell hard after contact and struggled to get back up. She left the game to be examined by the trainer, and did not return to the contest. She ended the game with 11 points, 6 rebounds and 5 steals.

With 3:49 left in the game starting center Paige Wells (So./Orleans, VT) fouled out. The score was 45-38 in favor of the visitors. Wells finished the game second in rebounds, grabbing 8, while the Gators' Franklin pulled down 9 to go with her 10 points.

Without Wells in the lineup, along with already missing Baker, the Knights struggled both on offense and defense. Lee hit on both free throws for Pine Manor to extend their lead to 9, which was all the lead needed for the Gators.

With both teams sitting back in a zone defense, there were extremely few free throws. Pine Manor hit on 4 of 5, while VTC converted on 3 of 6. The biggest difference in the game was in rebounding, as PMC held the 49-37 advantage.

The Knights have no time to rest, as they take to the road to Amherst, MA on Sunday to face Hampshire College. Pine Manor also takes the court again on Sunday, as they host St. Joe's (CT) at their home in Chestnut Hill, MA.

Thanks to Vermont Tech Athletic Communications

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