PROVIDENCE, RI – Every time the Johnson & Wales University women's basketball team tried to pull away from Anna Maria College, the AMCATS fought back. The Wildcats made key shots down the stretch in the fourth quarter on their way to a 69-55 victory over the AMCATS on Thursday.
Anna Maria: 4-16, 1-11 GNAC
Johnson & Wales: 13-7, 8-3 GNAC
JWU's lead grew to as many as 26-16 at the 4:06 mark of the second quarter on a jumper by Ally Mishol (Longmeadow, Mass.). A Kristina Russo basket two minutes later cut the lead to four. Raquel Pederzani's (Coventry, RI) three pointer in the closing seconds of the third quarter grew the lead to 52-40. AMC got the lead down to six, but a 6-0 JWU run put the game out of reach.
Recording her third double-double in a row was senior Kimberly Viafara (Woodside, NY) with 11 points and 16 rebounds, tying her career-high. She nearly had the double dip in the first half, recording eight points and nine rebounds. Pederzani had a great all-around game, producing 19 points, four rebounds, four assists and three steals. Ashley Thompson (Bellingham, Mass.) added 17 points and Kristen Habbel (Phoenixville, Pa.) recorded seven points and five assists.
Leading the AMCATS was Deja Taitt with 18 points and five rebounds. Nicole Mareiro came off the bench to score 11 points and Christina Gauvin added 10 points.
Johnson & Wales had a distinct advantage inside. The Wildcats had a 36-24 edge for points in the paint as well as 19-8 in second chance points. JWU out-rebounded Anna Maria, 43-37.
Johnson & Wales is on the road for its next four games, starting Saturday at St. Joseph (Conn.) for a 1 pm tip.