LONGMEADOW, Mass. Wheelock women's basketball defeated Bay Path College, 65-58, Saturday evening. With the win, the Wheelock Wildcats improve to 3-7 (3-3 NECC) while the Bay Path Wildcats fall to 0-12 (2-0 NECC).
How it happened: Wheelock built a 6-0 lead early in the first quarter behind back-to-back buckets from junior Katie Walsh (East Islip, N.Y.), but Bay Path responded with a pair of jumpers from senior Kaylee Herring (Worcester, Vt.) to even the score at 6-6 at the 6:03 mark. Wheelock created separation with a 11-4 run to close the frame, featuring five points from senior Gaby Haywood(Longmeadow, Mass.), to hold a 17-10 advantage.
Wheelock opened the second quarter with a 9-2 run, paced by four points from Haywood, to harness a 26-12 lead. Bay Path graduate Paige Marshall worked at the gap with a pair of layups, but Walsh used layups to sandwich a 9-5 run from Wheelock to own a 35-21 lead at the break. Bay Path delivered a stellar third quarter performance, outscoring Wheelock, 25-9, during the period, ignited by back-to-back three-pointers from freshman Emmeline Bronson (Shelton, Conn.), who contributed 12 points in the quarter. A jumper from Bronson whittled the deficit to single digits, 37-29, and then four points from Herring set the score at 39-33 at the 6:16 mark. Haywood exchanged buckets with Herring and Bronson, but a pair of free throws from Herring gave Bay Path a 46-44 lead heading into the final quarter.
The Wheelock defense limited Bay Path to five points over the final eight minutes of the game. Haywood knocked down a pair of jumpers, followed by a layup from sophomore Julianna Kane (Quincy, Mass.) to close the gap to 55-53. Walsh connected on two free throws at the 4:38 mark to regain a 57-55 edge for Wheelock. Walsh carried the Wildcats down the stretch with six straight points to build a 62-55 cushion with just over three minutes to play. Bronson converted a late jumper, but the Wildcats held off Bay Path at the free throw line to secure the 65-58 victory.
Wheelock outrebounded Bay Path, 49-41, during the contest. Bay Path shot 32.9% (23-of-70) from the field, including 26.3% (5-of-19) from three-point range, and 87.5% (7-of-8) from the foul line. Wheelock connected on 40% (26-of-65) from the floor and 66.7% (10-of-15) from the charity stripe.
Who stood out: Walsh powered the Wheelock attack with a double-double performance of a game-high 27 points and a game-high 18 rebounds. Haywood tallied 20 points with four rebounds and two assists, while Kane recorded nine rebounds, six points and five assists in the win.
What it means: Wheelock improves to 3-3 in NECC play and looks to gain momentum as they had into to back-to-back NECC matches next week.
Up Next: The Wildcats are back in action on Tuesday, January 16th when they host Becker College (6:30 p.m. tipoff).
Partial Release Courtesy of Bay Path Sports Information.