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Contact: William Sodoma
Date: February 19, 2011
WATERVILLE, Maine --- The Colby College women's basketball team will head to the New England Small College Athletic Conference Final Four for the second straight year, but Middlebury College made sure it would not be easy as the second-seeded Mules hung on for a 67-64 victory over the seventh-seeded Panthers on Saturday at Wadsworth Gymnasium in a quarterfinal game.
Colby (21-4) will take on third-seeded Bowdoin College in a league semifinal game next Saturday at 4 p.m. at Amherst College. The two teams also met last year in a semifinal game, with Colby moving on to the final. Middlebury finishes the season at 15-9.
Colby took an 81-60 win over Middlebury just 15 days ago and came into the game on a seven-game winning streak. The Panthers led 33-28 at halftime and still held a five-point lead midway through the second half.
Despite playing just 25 minutes because of first half foul trouble, Colby's Rachael Mack (Augusta, Maine) finished with game-highs of 26 points and 12 rebounds for her seventh double-double of the season. She shot 6-for-12 from the field and was 14-for-16 from the foul line.
Mack hit two free throws with 1:36 left to put the Mules up 64-59. The Panthers answered back 21 seconds later when Lauren Sanchez (Seattle, Wash.) nailed two free throws to cut the margin back to three. Colby had a miss at the other end, but Middlebury had a turnover with 30 seconds to play. Diana Manduca was immediately fouled and hit two free throws for the Mules with 29 seconds to play for a 66-61 lead. The Panthers once again fought back as Maddie Moreau (Canton, N.Y.) nailed a 3-point shot with 19 seconds left. Mack was fouled on the inbounds pass and hit 1-for-2 from the line to make it 67-64. The Mules were able to supply some pressure defense to prevent Middlebury to get off a 3-point shot and the Panthers settled for a missed lay-up by Moreau with six seconds to play. A wild scramble on the rebound ended the game.
Middlebury was up 49-44 with 9:58 left in the game and had one chance to go up by seven points. The Panthers' last lead was 55-54 when Stephany Surrette (Worcester, Mass.) hit a pair of free throws with 5:10 to play. With the score 56-56, Colby's Aarika Ritchie (Lee, Maine) scored on a drive to the basket and Mack added another inside score for a 60-56 margin. Sanchez answered with a drive of her own to the basket to make it 60-58 and then went 1-for-2 from the foul line to cut Colby's lead to 60-59. Manduca scored on another drive to the basket with 2:08 to play for a 62-59 lead and then Mack hit the two free throws with 1:36 remaining.
Jules Kowalski (Montville, N.J.), Diana Manduca (Portland, Maine), Ritchie, and Jil Vaughan (Wareham, Mass.) all had 10 points for Colby. Vaughan added seven rebounds, while Kowalski pulled down six. Manduca finished with a game-high six assists.
Sanchez had 20 points, including a 14-for-20 effort from the foul line, six rebounds, six steals, and five assists for the Panthers. Tracy Borsinger (Chatham, N.J.) added 12 points, while Surrette had eight boards and five points despite playing just 18 minutes because of foul problems.
COLBY 67, MIDDLEBURY 64
Lauren Sanchez 3-11 14-20 20; Tracy Borsinger 4-10 2-2 12; Sarah Marcus 2-3
0-0 6; Maddie Moreau 2-5 0-0 6; Allison Needham 2-2 1-2 5; Stephany Surrette
1-3 3-4 5; Scarlett Kirk 2-5 0-0 4; Brittany Perfetti 2-7 0-0 4; Katie Pett
1-1 0-0 2; Jesse Miller 0-0 0-0 0; Laura Lowry 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 19-47 20-28
Rachael Mack 6-12 14-16 26; Jil Vaughan 4-9 2-4 10; Diana Manduca 4-14 2-2
10; Julianne Kowalski 4-7 2-3 10; Aarika Ritchie 3-8 4-5 10; Jacky
McLaughlin 0-2 1-2 1; Jen Nale 0-1 0-0 0; Karlyn Adler 0-1 0-0 0. Totals
21-54 25-32 67.
Middlebury.................... 33 31 - 64
Colby......................... 28 39 - 67
3-point goals--Middlebury 6-11 (Tracy Borsinger 2-5; Sarah Marcus 2-2;
Maddie Moreau 2-2; Brittany Perfetti 0-1; Lauren Sanchez 0-1), Colby 0-7 (;
Diana Manduca 0-4; Aarika Ritchie 0-1; Jen Nale 0-1; Karlyn Adler 0-1).
Fouled out--Middlebury-None, Colby-Julianne Kowalski. Rebounds--Middlebury
34 (Jesse Miller 8; Stephany Surrette 8), Colby 36 (Rachael Mack 12).
Assists--Middlebury 8 (Lauren Sanchez 5), Colby 14 (Diana Manduca 6). Total
fouls--Middlebury 21, Colby 18. Technical fouls--Middlebury-None,