BOSTON, Mass. - The Simmons College women's basketball team was defeated by visiting Rivier University, 76-54, this afternoon in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference contest at Moore Gymnasium on the campus of Simmons in Boston, Mass. The game had been re-scheduled from the previous day, following a snowstorm. The Sharks fall to 4-11 and 0-3 in GNAC action, while the Raiders improve to 7-8 overall and 3-1.
Rivier shot 54.5% (30-55) from the floor, including 58.3% (14-24) in the second half, while holding Simmons to just 23.5% (8-34) in the second stanza.
The Raiders opened the game by scoring 13 of the first 14 points in the initial four minutes, including six from senior guard Deanna Purcell (Hudson, N.H.), to take a 13-1 lead at 15:56 of the period. The Sharks came alive with six of the next eight points, led by four from sophomore forward Liz Brasa (East Hartford, Conn.), to cut the deficit to 15-7 with 13:31 showing in the first half. Rivier put together a 20-7 stretch over the next eight minutes, fueled by 10 points from Purcell, to increase its cushion to 35-14 for its biggest lead of the second half at the 5:40 mark. Simmons came back by closing out the first half with a 17-5 run, led by eight points from junior guard Jennifer Janiak (Chelmsford, Mass.), to pull the home team to within 40-31 at halftime.
Sophomore point guard Jamie Zoldy (Watertown, Conn.) knocked down a jumper with 15:18 left in the second half to keep it a nine-point margin at 48-39, but it was the last field goal the Sharks made for just under eight minutes as the Raiders scored 12 unanswered points to take a 60-39 advantage with 9:23 to go in the contest. Sophomore forward Savannah Butterfield (Londonderry, N.H.) scored six points during the burst. Junior guard Anjulisa Rhodes (Lawrence, Mass.) later made a layup with 2:42 remaining in the game to give Rivier its largest lead at 71-48 as it held onto a 20-plus lead the rest of the way to pick up the win.
Zoldy led Simmons with 11 points and also dished for three assists, pulled down three rebounds and made a steal, while Janiak scored 10 points, hauled in four rebounds and passed for two assists. Sophomore forward Ashley McAdams (Freeport, N.Y.) contributed with eight points, nine rebounds, an assist and a game-high four steals.
Purcell led all scorers with 25 points and was 11-17 from the floor, including 3-5 from three-point range in her fifth 25-plus point effort this season for the Raiders and added five rebounds, four assists, three steals and a pair of blocks. Sophomore guard Caitlyn Perry (Nashua, N.H.) netted 18 points to go with a pair of rebounds, four assists and three steals, while Butterfield finished with 13 points, four boards, three assists and a pair of blocked shots. Sophomore forward Chelsey Hussey (Lebanon, Conn.) came off the bench to grab a game-high 12 rebounds in addition to scoring four points, handing out four assists and coming up with a steal.
The Sharks will be in action again on Wednesday, January 28 when they travel to cross town rival Emerson College for a 7:00 p.m. tip-off, while Rivier heads to Hartford, Conn. on January 27 to play Trinity College at 7:00 p.m.