BOSTON, Mass. Thursday night at Winsor Court, the Wheelock women's basketball team suffered a 45-43 loss to Lesley University. With the loss, the Wildcats fall to 2-6 (2-3 NECC) while the Lynx improve to 2-9 (2-2 NECC).
How it happened: The game got off to a slow start, offensively. Each team put up a tremendous defensive fight, keeping the score low. A strong three point percentage, including two by Holly O'Sullivan (Quincy, Mass.) saw the Wildcats command early. The Lynx would begin to push back in the second quarter, ramping up their defensive presence with key rebounds by Theresa Pereira (Hopedale, Mass.) and Linda Wallentine (Monroe Township, N.J.) to head in the half leading 27-24.
In the third quarter, the game belonged to the Wildcats and junior forward Katie Walsh (East Islip, N.Y.) who recorded 7 points and 7 rebounds to propel Wheelock 33-31 over Lesley. Junior Forward Sarah Tobin (Salisbury, Mass.) commanded a strong defensive front for the Wildcats with two blocks in the period
A pair of made free throws by Dakota Jones (Torrance, Calif.) tied the game at 35-35 in the first minute of the 4th quarter. Both teams traded baskets until Gaby Haywood's (East Longmeadow, Mass.) notched a foul shot to break the tie 40-39 with 4 minutes remaining in the game. Wallentine was able to steal the ball and score on a short jumper, from the right side of the net, to push the Lynx ahead, 41-40. Wheelock quickly took the lead with a Haywood jumper but Lesley responded with a basket of their own, by Elizabeth Portante (Littleton, Mass.) to once again even the score, 43-43. Wallentine was sent to the line with 34 seconds on the clock and scored what would prove to be the game winning point.
Who stood out: Katie Walsh finished the day with 22 points, 15 rebounds, 1 assists and 2 blocks. Gaby Haywood recorded 7 points, 8 rebounds, and 1 steal. Lastly, Holly O'Sullivan notched 9 points, 3 rebounds, and 4 steals.
What it means: Wheelock looks to compete strongly in the next week against two NECC Rivals.
Up Next: The Wildcats are back in action on Saturday, January 13th when they travel to Bay Path College (1:00 p.m. tipoff).