Pride women’s basketball took on the Westfield State Owls Friday night in Blake arena. The Women pulled out a gritty win over the Owls. Springfield was led by its duo of Heather King and Alex Goslin.
Goslin had a big night and scored 14 points, but the stat sheet only tells half the story for her. Goslin was the primary ball handler for most of the night and did a good job at breaking the Owl’s press defense. Whenever the Pride needed a clutch basket, Goslin would deliver.
“Once I got past the first trap the floor was wide open. That was one of my goals, to get past the first trap and see what happens,” said Goslin. “I was sort of taking it as it came. I tried not to get too overwhelmed. ”
Goslin wasn’t the only one who had an impressive night. King took most of the scoring load as she scored 20 points. Along with King, Chelsea McAllister scored 14, and Grace Restituyo had 11 points and 16 rebounds.
Westfield took an unconventional approach by subbing out full lineups every two minutes. The Owls played 17 women, and the strategy worked well in the first half.
“One of the things we talked about was playing tough through fatigue,” said Pride head coach Naomi Graves. “We’re playing with only eight kids. It’s really hard. Win or lose I would of been really proud of my kids.”
The Owls had forced a whoppping 20 turnovers in the first half and went into halftime up 32-29.
“We made a lot of mistakes but they gave everything they had,” said Graves. “I think our kids showed a hell of tenacity and grit.”
The Pride adjusted as the game went on and only gave up 10 turnovers in the second half. As soon as the third quarter started, sophomore guard Emily Jacques scored four straight points for the Pride.
Springfield went into the fourth quarter up 51-45. At one point the Pride led by as much as 12 points, but the game was tied at 60 with 3:41 to go.
The two teams went back forth but Springfield pulled away late. With only 12 seconds left, Alex goslin nailed a jump shot from the baseline to give the Pride a three point lead. After her bucket, McAllister sealed the win with two free throws.
“Chelsea passed me the ball and she said ‘shoot!’. I was expecting a defender to be on me but I was so wide open so I shot. When it went in I was super happy but I knew it wasn’t over yet and we had to stop them on defense,” said Goslin.
Springfield now sits at 7-2 on the season and Westfield falls to 5-5. Up next the Pride will host the Hampton Inn West Springfield/Naismith Classic in Blake Arena on Saturday, December 30 and Sunday, December 31. The women will open the tournament with MCLA on Saturday, at 1 p.m.