Bears Out-Claw Cougars, Clinch NEWMAC Berth
NEW LONDON, Conn.-Sophomore Torie Sutherland scored 11 of her game-high 16 points in the second half on the way to her second double-double in three games as the Coast Guard women's basketball team defeated Clark, 58-39, in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference action on Wednesday night. The victory improves Coast Guard to 15-3 (11-3 NEWMAC) and clinches the Bears' second straight NEWMAC Tournament appearance while Clark falls to 8-11 (5-9 NEWMAC).
Sophomore Meghan Fornaro hit a trio of three pointers in the opening 5:04, part of 11 points for her during a 17-4 Coast Guard run spanning the first 9:46 of the game to give the Bears a double-digit lead they would not relinquish.
Coast Guard would go on to build a 31-9 lead with 2:52 to go before Clark closed out the first half on a 4-0 mini spurt to grab a sliver of momentum. Most of the second half Coast Guard's lead hovered around 20 points until senior Ashleigh Condon made a pair of free throws to cut the Clark deficit to just 13 at 48-35 with 6:58 to play in the game.
The Bears would respond by scoring the next eight points led by Sutherland who netted a jumper and a pair of free throws. Freshman Amanda Roy hit a jumper with 3:02 to play to push the Bears' lead back to 21 and allow Coast Guard to cruise down the stretch.
Clark was led by Condon who finished with 10 points and seven rebounds in the loss. Her seven rebounds were matched by senior Esther Cohn who finished with four points and a game-best five blocked shots.
Sutherland finished with 10 rebounds to lead all players while Knox added nine boards of the bench to go along with seven points. Fornaro finished with 14 to join Sutherland in double-figures. Junior Alexi Howland added seven points off the bench in the victory.
Coast Guard returns to action on Wednesday, February 5th when they travel to take on Wheaton at 7:00 pm.
POST GAME COMMENTS FROM HEAD COACH ALEX IVANSHECK