Magical season comes to end with a loss
Story Courtesy of Smith Sports Information
NORTHAMPTON, Mass.-- The first home postseason game in Smith College history was also the first postseason win in Smith College history as the Pioneers moved on to the semifinals of the ECAC New England Tournament with a 95-67 win over Rivier College on Wednesday night.
Smith placed four players in double-figures and outrebounded the Raiders 63-31 to improve to 21-6 on the season. The Pioneers set a season high in points and rebounds. Rivier sees their season come to an end with a record of 18-10.
The Pioneers scored the first eight points of the game, capped by a short turnaround jumper from Ellie Giles that forced the Raiders into a timeout. Rivier got on the board courtesy of a layup by Laura Yesu, but Devon Quattrocchi extended the lead to 11-2 with a triple on Smith's next possesion.
A pair of free throws by Amanda Zakoske upped the lead to 16-4 with 16:51 on the clock. Deanna Purcell's laup cut the lead to 29-21 with 11:36 to go, but Smith pushed their advantage to 19 (42-23) when Rosa Drummond put back Maddie Page's missed layup, and took a 56-31 lead into halftime.
Smith opened the second half on an 10-4 run to put the game out of reach, going up 66-35 with 16:19 left in the half.
Drummond, named to the NEWMAC All-Conference first team earlier in the day, led Smith with 19 points. Giles added 12, while Zakoske and Page each chipped in 11. Giles added 11 boards for a double-double, while Sydney Parkmond narrowly missed a double-double of her own, with nine points and 11 rebounds. The 11 rebounds were a career high.
Senior Amandra Purcell (Hudson, NH) led Rivier with 22 points, knocking down six shots from behind the arc. The Pioneers limited Rivier's top scorer, freshman Deanna Purcell (Hudson, NH) to just 10 points, 11 below her average.
Smith will play the winner of No. 3 seed Endicott and No. 6 seed Clark. That game was postponed due to snow in the New England region. The game will take place at Keene State College on Saturday, March 3. In the other semi-final, the host Owls will take on Colby-Sawyer College, with the winners to meet in the final on Sunday.