Women’s Basketball Clipped 69-48 by Wheelock on Senior Day

abbi molner shoots a jumper

BENNINGTON, Vt. – The Southern Vermont College women's basketball team fell 69-48 to Wheelock College Saturday afternoon in New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) action at the Mountaineer Athletic Center.

The visiting Wildcats went into the locker room on top 33-20 before extending their upper hand in the second half to spoil SVC's Senior Day.

Prior to the start of the contest, Southern Vermont recognized and honored three-year captain Amber Dow (Panton, Vt.) and fellow senior Abbi Molner (Wilmington, Vt.) for their dedication to the program over the years.

Next up for SVC (1-20, 1-15 NECC) is a Tuesday Conference matchup with Elms College slated for 7 p.m. at the MAC. Wheelock is back in action the same night when the Wildcats host Daniel Webster College at 6:30 p.m.

Molner led her team during her Senior Day with team-highs of 11 points and eight rebounds while freshman Sarah Poirier (Ferrisburgh, Vt.) notched 10 points and two boards in 14 minutes off the bench. Sophomore Amber Lesure (Cheshire, Mass.) had eight points, three steals and two assists, and sophomore Chloe Longe (Enosburg Falls, Vt.) chalked up five points, seven rebounds and a pair of assists in the effort.

Wheelock sophomore Katie Walsh (East Islip, N.Y.) tallied game-highs of 23 points and 12 rebounds as senior Brianna Hochwarter (Attleboro, Mass.) totaled 18 points, three steals and three assists. Fellow senior Michelle Woods (Wilmington, Mass.) put up 14 points and six boards while junior Gabrielle Haywood (E. Longmeadow, Mass.) had seven points in 16 minutes of reserve time.

The Wildcats shot 44.8 percent (26-58) from the floor as the Mountaineers went 19-for-56 (33.9 percent) from field goal range. WC pulled a slim 38-36 edge on the boards while outscoring SVC 38-22 in the key.

Hochwarter drilled a trey from the right edge on a catch-and-shoot to put her team up 5-2 in the early going and spark a 9-0 Wildcat run. WC used its offensive boards to score eight second-chance points in the first 6:09 of the game as a Walsh put-back sent the difference into double digits. Lesure got a layup to go with 2:15 left in the first, and the rest of the scoring during the period came when Hochwarter connected on all three of her free throws after being fouled on a downtown attempt with two seconds left.

Poirier banked home a triple for the first basket of the second frame, but the Wildcats then went on a 7-2 run to make it a 28-15 difference. After WC senior Emily Doyle (Lynn, Mass.) dropped one from beyond the perimeter, Poirier answered with one of her own as the shot clock expired in the final minute of the half. Haywood then got a jumper to go for WC to go ahead by 13 at the intermission.

Wheelock took to a 17-3 run in the front-end of the third quarter— using a Hochwarter trey from the left edge to open things up. Southern Vermont cut into its deficit with a 7-1 spurt late in the stanza, but Hochwarter drilled another downtown shot to make it a 54-31 game going into the fourth. Lesure connected on a three-point attempt midway through the final 10 minutes, and Molner would later drain one of her own off a Lesure pass. It would not be enough, however, as WC was able to keep up its offensive success to maintain the separation and finish off the victory.