Springfield, Mass. - December 15, 2017 - With 12 seconds left in the game, sophomore point guard Alex Goslin (South Windsor, Conn.) converted a turnaround jumper to give the Pride a three-point lead, before junior guard Chelsea McAllister (Baltimore, Vt.) sealed the victory at the free-throw line, as the Springfield College women's basketball team defeated Westfield State, 72-67, on Friday night in an electric Blake Arena.
With the win, the Pride is now 7-2 on the season, and has won five-consecutive games, while the Owls fall to 5-5 overall. Springfield College shot a blistering 48.3 percent from the field in the victory, as it was 28-for-58 on the evening. Westfield State was only 22-of-66 (33.3%) in the setback, as the Pride also held a rebound advantage of 47-29. Springfield College's defensive effort was nothing short of impressive, as coming into the contest, Westfield State was averaging 89.9 points per game. The last time the Owls scored less than 67 points was on December 30, 2016, in a 82-65 loss to Ohio Northern.
Offensively, the Pride was led by senior forward Heather King (Lebanon, N.H.), who notched 20 points on the night, while Goslin and McAllister registered 14 points apiece. McAllister finished with eight rebounds, two assists and two steals while Goslin also had four assists and two steals in the win. Junior forward Gracie Restituyo (Barrington, R.I.) also had a great game on both ends of the court, netting 11 points and hauling in 16 boards for her second double double in as many games.
Westfield State, which played 17 student-athletes on Friday night, was led by Lucy Barrett (Williamstown, Mass.), who posted 12 points, while Melissa Gray (Ipswich, Mass.) tallied 11 points off the bench for the Owls.
Even at 6-6 following a three-pointer from Alyssa Darling (Palmer, Mass.) just 2:32 into the contest, back-to-back lay-ups from Westfield State's Ashley Lane (Warrenton, Va.) gave the visitors a 13-8 lead with 2:16 left in the first, before a basket from Alyssa Camara (Quincy, Mass.), followed by a bucket from Goslin as time expired made it 15-10, Westfield State, after 10 minutes.
Restituyo and King converted lay-ups in the early stages of the second quarter to make it a one-point game with the Pride trailing 15-14, before a three-pointer from McAllister with 6:19 to play in the first half gave the Pride a 19-17 lead. McAllister would bury another with 5:12 on the clock, before picking up her third of the first half with 4:21 remaining, giving Springfield College a 25-20 advantage. Barrett would go on to score five-consecutive points for the Owls to even the score at 25, before the junior gave her team a seven-point, 32-25 lead with 1:26 to go in the first half. Sophomore forward Taylor Hall (Tolland, Conn.) would hit back-to-back lay-ups to end the half, sending Springfield College into the locker room facing a 32-29 deficit.
A revived Springfield team came out in the second half and wrestled back the lead, as Goslin hit two free throws and followed with a lay-up to make it 38-34, Pride, before the sophomore did it again with 6:08 on the clock, making it 40-34, Springfield College. Even at 45 with 3:31 to play in the stanza, the Pride would hold the Owls scoreless for the remainder of the third quarter, but also scored six points, capped by a free throw from Restituyo to possess a 51-45 lead heading to the fourth.
Restituyo and Goslin both hit lay-ups just 22 seconds apart to open a 12-point, 59-47 lead over Westfield State, but the Owls would go on a 13-1 run, capped by two free throws from Allison Hester (Sutton, Mass.) to even the game at 60 with 3:41 to play. After Gray hit a three-pointer with 1:25 remaining, giving the Owls a 67-66 lead, King would knock down a baseline jumper, before Goslin's game-sealing basket lifted the Pride to victory.
Up next, Springfield College will host the Hampton Inn West Springfield/Naismith Classic in Blake Arena on Saturday, December 30 and Sunday, December 31. The Pride will open the tournament with MCLA on Saturday, as the two sides will tip off at 1 p.m.