Simmons Basketball earned a 75-42 Great Northeast Athletic Conference win over the Lasell College Lasers on Saturday. Sophomore guard Jessica Thomas (East Sandwich, Mass.) had a standout performance for the Sharks, scoring 21 points. Also scoring in double-figures were Stephanie Fox (West Springfield, Mass.) and Julianna Eagles (Quincy, Mass.), who tallied 13 and 11 points, respectively. With the win, Simmons advances to 16-8 overall, 8-4 GNAC, and advances to Tuesday's conference tournament quarterfinals. With the loss, Lasell ends the season with 7-18 overall, 3-9 GNAC.
It took almost two minutes for either team to get on the board, but a fast-break by freshman Liz O'Connor (Milton, Mass.) put the Sharks ahead first, 2-0. Lasell's Tricia Culver dropped in a baseline jump shot a minute later to tie things up, and a second Culver bucket gave Lasell a 4-2 lead at the 16-minute mark.
Three straight treys by Thomas sparked Simmons into an 11-2 run, which culminated in a seven-point lead for the Sharks. Junior guard Kelsey Converse's first three of the game cut the Sharks' lead to four points, 13-9, but within two minutes, Simmons held a double-digit advantage, capped with Thomas' fourth three.
Simmons continued to pull away, building up to a 38-17 halftime lead.
The rims were unkind to both teams in the opening three minutes of the second half, as neither team could connect with the basket. Lasell's Brittany Jefferies had the first bucket of the half before three uninterrupted trifectas sent Simmons on another 11-1 run.
Lasell had chances down the stretch to close the gap, but they could not get their baskets to fall. The Lasers also had trouble at the foul line, connecting on just nine-of-sixteen total freebies in the contest.
Simmons, however, had no difficulty connecting with the hoop, finishing the day with eleven total three-point field goals, shooting 44% from beyond the arc.
Simmons shot nearly 50% in the first half, and finished with an overall shooting percentage of 43.1%, good for double the Lasers' total shot percentage (21.4%). The Sharks also held a significant 57-40 rebounding margin over the Lasers.
Culver was the leading scorer for Lasell, and the only Laser to hit double-figures. Freshman guard Reegan Brackett finished with nine points in the contest, and Converse drained two three-pointers and totaled seven points for the Lasers. Freshman forward Kim Archibald had a game-high ten rebounds for Lasell.
Fifth-seeded Simmons will face off against #4 Emerson College in the GNAC tournament quarterfinals on Tuesday, February 23 at 5:30pm.