Senior forward Tamara Tribble netted 10 points and picked up 14 rebounds to aid the Springfield College women’s basketball team to a 43-37 victory over Emerson College on Saturday afternoon at Blake Arena.
The Pride are now 4-3 overall and 3-2 in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference, while the Lions dropped to 3-4 overall and 1-3 in conference play.
Springfield took the initial lead just 2:22 into the contest when Tribble corralled the ball in the low-post and finished a layup, putting the Pride up 2-0.
After junior forward Jaimie Bickelhaupt’s jump shot from the top of the key, followed by a low-post finish, the Pride were up 13-6 with 11:38 remaining in the first half.
From here, Emerson went on a 5-0 run, including a layup from junior forward Catherine Cloutier and a three-pointer from freshman guard Elizabeth Horan.
The Lions momentum was iced when Tribble finished a layup of her own with 8:45 remaining in the first half, making the score 15-11.
“We played really well today. We struggled but we fought through it. Our defense saved us,” stated Tribble. “Individually, I finally stepped up on offense. I was crashing the boards even though some teams have been trying to prevent me from getting rebounds, I was able to fight through that and get some.”
After coming out of the first half with a 21-14 lead, the Pride kept rolling in the second stanza, thanks to solid contribution from sophomore guard Emily Taylor, who finished the game with six points and four rebounds.
“Emily Taylor came off the bench and sparked us today,” commented head coach Naomi Graves. “Emily is doing some really good things for us right now. She looked relaxed and like she was in a rhythm. I thought she played really well today.”
Closing in on the Pride’s lead, the Lions began to claw themselves back into the game late in the second half.
With 2:48 remaining in the contest, sophomore guard Sienna O’Han found herself at the free-throw line with her team down 41-35. O’Han buried both of her free chances to cut the deficit to only four points.
After strong, back-and-forth play down the stretch, freshman Lexi Windwer sealed the deal for the Pride, after finishing a pair of free-throws herself, making the score 43-37.
After a dismal 2012-2013 campaign in which the Pride went 4-20 overall, Springfield has revived the program, picking up their fourth win of the season against the Lions and ultimately matching last season’s win total.
“We had 52 rebounds today. That won us the game,” said Graves. “We held them to 14 points in the first half. They are such good kids and they work really hard, they are going to be just fine.”
Tribble, Graves and the rest of the Pride will be back in action when they travel to Worcester State University on Friday, Dec. 13 to take on the Lancers.