Late wednesday night in Blake Arena, Springfield women’s basketball took on the Coast Guard Bears for the second time this season.
The first time the two teams met the Pride came out on top, 62-40. Three Springfield players scored in double digits in that contest, led by senior forward Heather King who had 18 points and 10 rebounds.
This time around the Pride also managed to come out on top, crusing to a 62-43 victory. The Pride used a strong defensive effort and four women scoring in double figures to sweep Coast Guard on the season.
“I think our team is starting to peak at the right time,”said Springfield head coach Naomi Graves. “I think they are starting to see that their hard work is producing a lot of good things for our program. I have complete confidence in them right now.”
Junior forward Grace Restituyo led the way for the Pride with 13 points and 9 rebounds. Sophomore guards Emily Jacques and Alex Goslin score 11 and 10 points respectively. Junior Chelsea Mcallister also pitched in 10 points for the Pride.
The women started the game firing on all cylinders and got out to a quick 10-0 lead before a timeout from Coast Guard. The women kept the defensive pressure on before allowing a late jumpshot from Bears forward Gillian Gerton to go into the first quarter up 16-2.
Emily Jacques led the way in the first quarter scoring seven out of the Pride’s 16 points.
“In the beginning of the game we came out really strong and it helps when you have your team behind you that trusts you and will have confidence in whatever you do,” said Jacques. “Then we kind of struggled a little bit but we pushed through and we all stuck together as a team.”
In the second quarter Coast Guard managed to find its groove on offense and both teams scored 15 points in the quarter. The Pride went into the half with a 31-17 lead but Coast Guard seemed to have the momentum.
The Pride killed that momentum and dominated the second the half. The women forced eleven turnovers and cruised to the win.
Graves gives a lot of credit to the team’s defensive ability.
“I think its a credit to our team in terms of teamwork and defensive focus,” said Graves. “I think everything comes out of our defense. So, for us to just lock a team down like I think we did in the first quarter is a tribute to our players and our team and where they want to be. I really believe it’s about teamwork and focus which is what we can control.”
With the win the Pride have now won four games straight and are in first place in the NEWMAC standings. For Coast Guard, the loss keeps them at seventh in the NEWMAC standings.
Springfield will take on Wheaton at 1 p.m. this Saturday in Blake Arena.