By Ben Ryan
After a 28-minute bus ride from Mt. Holyoke College to Springfield College, the Lyons headed into Blake Arena sitting with a record of 2-14 and about to face the surging hot women’s Pride, who have won seven of their last eight games. With a record of 12-5, the Pride knew they had the upper hand.
Within another span of roughly 28 minutes, the Lyons found themselves down 34 points at halftime. From the start of the second half and showing no signs of taking the foot of the gas pedal, the Pride topped the Lyons in dominating fashion, 92-30.
The Pride were led by their top scorers, Ava Adamopoulos and Heather King, who both had 14 points. Adamopoulous and King have been the go-to players all season long, and with chemistry like theirs, once they start, they’re hard to stop.
“Ava and I have always had a connection in the high-low, she looks for me when I’m in the high post and I look for her in the low. We kind of just know where we’re at and it’s a weird connection that we have,” King said with a vibrant smile on her face. “It’s certainly grown over the past few years.”
The dynamic duo also led the team in rebounds; Adamopoulos had six and King had eight. As a team, the Pride doubled the amount of rebounds the Lyons had, 44-22.
“Last time we played them our post had a field day when it came to our offensive game. We had a lot of offensive rebounds and it’s a huge part of our offense,” Adamopoulous said. “We typically generate 30 plus points from the post, which opens up our guards. So being able to continue that for tonight’s game will only make us better for M.I.T.”
In a game that can sometimes be considered a “trap” game, players can underestimate their opponents and not play as hard; the Pride made sure they didn’t fall into it. Not only did the starters do their job, the bench did theirs as well, generating an outstanding 54 points, along with shutting down the Lyons in every possible way.
“My strategy was for our defensive end to not let them score. We wanted to hold them to 17 points in the first half and that’s exactly we did. We wanted to challenge ourselves to hold them around 34 or 38 points,” Coach Naomi Graves said. “On our offensive end we wanted to execute, run our sets, be patient and make the extra pass. We did that a lot, players were giving up shots for other people.”
However, with many players taking part in a dominating win, the star of the game was senior guard, Lexi Windwer, who set the Springfield College women’s basketball record for three pointers made in a career. Windwer splashed her 181st career triple three minutes into the third quarter, passing the previous record holder, Tara McCarthy, who set it with 180 three’s made from 2004-2008.
The Pride, now standing at 13-5 (8-1 NEWMAC) will be back in Blake Arena to matchup against the 15-3 (9-1 NEWMAC) M.I.T. Engineers on Saturday afternoon at 2p.m.