PROVIDENCE, RI– A feisty Simmons College gave the Johnson & Wales University women's basketball team fits all afternoon. The Wildcats found their offensive rhythm in the second half as they went on to beat the Sharks, 60-49, on Monday.
Simmons: 4-7, 4-2 GNAC
Johnson & Wales: 7-6, 3-2 GNAC
Simmons would hold the lead for most of the first half. A pair of Presley Silva free throws at the 2:07 mark of the first quarter gave the Sharks their largest lead of the game, 13-7. Johnson & Wales wouldn't get a lead until Kimberly Viafara's (Woodside, NY) layup at the 4:45 mark of the second quarter put the hosts 20-19. JWU closed the first half on an 8-2 run to take a 24-21 lead into the half.
The third quarter went back and forth with four lead changes and one tie. Five-straight points from Ally Mishol (Longmeadow, Mass.) put JWU up 44-33 with 2:05 remaining she hit another basket to give JWU a 42-37 margin going into the final 10 minutes. The Wildcats held the lead for the entire last period and the margin grew to as many as 53-42 on an Ashley Thompson (Bellingham, Mass.) free throw with just under three minutes left.
Thompson led all players as she produced her second double-double in a row with 19 points and 12 rebounds. Mishol added 11 points and 10 rebounds for her second double-double of the season. Viafara just missed the double dip as she came off the bench to score 12 points and snag nine rebounds.
Three Sharks reached double figures, led by Francesca Corsinetti's 13 points. Ashley McAdams was next with 12. Silva was on the verge of a triple double as she had 11 points, eight rebounds and career-high seven blocks. The seven rejections are one short of the SC single-game record.
JWU shot 50 percent from the floor in the second half for a rate of 37.7 percent (26-69) for the game. Simmons hit 32.7 percent (18-55). The Sharks did have a decided advantage at the free throw line, going 10-12 while the Wildcats hit just 5-15. Johnson & Wales won the battle inside, outrebounding Simmons 47-38 and had a 32-8 advantage for points in the paint.
The Wildcats wrap up their four-game home stand on Thursday when they tipoff at 7 p.m. against Emmanuel.