Women's basketball reaches NESCAC Final Four

Contact: William Sodoma
Date: February 20, 2010
Athletics Preview Photos

Aarika Ritchie

WATERVILLE, Maine --- The Colby College women's basketball team is headed to the New England Small College Athletic Conference Final Four.

Aarika Ritchie (Lee, Maine) had 12 of her team-high 19 points in the first half and the second-seeded Colby College women's basketball team pulled away in the second half for a 65-57 win over Trinity College in a New England Small College Athletic Conference quarterfinal game Saturday at Wadsworth Gymnasium.

The Mules move to 22-3 overall and will play in a NESCAC semifinal along with two other Maine colleges next Saturday, while Trinity closes the season at 15-9. Colby will play fifth-seeded Bowdoin College at Amherst College at 4 p.m. in a league semifinal. Meanwhile, top-seeded Amherst will entertain sixth-seeded Bates College at 2 p.m. The semifinal winners will play a noon championship game at Amherst on Sunday.

"We are excited to extend our season and look forward to an exciting week of preparation," Colby head coach Lori Gear McBride said. "This is a wonderful reward for a great group of young ladies."

Trinity played tough from the beginning of the game and only trailed 32-29 at halftime. The Bantams had a 37-35 rebounding advantage in the game, despite the Mules being the third-ranked team in the country in rebound margin (plus 12.7 heading into the game).

Ritchie shot 5-for-8 from the field and 8-for-10 from the foul line. The Mules, the top free throw shooting team in the NESCAC at 76 percent, shot 22-for-26 from the foul line.

"Today was an opportunity for another player to step up and Aarika Ritchie was just outstanding this afternoon," Gear McBride said. "She has quietly become an impact player in our league and she couldn't have picked a better game to show everything she is capable of."

Alison Cappelloni (Sudbury, Mass.) had 12 points, six rebounds, and a team-high three assists for the Mules. Samantha Allen (Bridgton, Maine) was 3-for-6 from 3-point range in scoring nine points, while Rachel Mack (Augusta, Maine) had eight points and six rebounds. Jil Vaughan (Wareham, Mass.) came off the bench and had five points and a team-best seven rebounds.

Trinity, the seventh seed, received 19 points from Kaitlin Ciarleglio (Waterbury, Conn.) and 12 from fellow guard Michelle Royals (Torrington, Conn.). Christine Card (Waterbury, Conn.) added seven points and a game-high nine rebounds, while Claire Arnstein (Hicksville, N.Y.) had eight points and five rebounds.

"There aren't typically any easy games when you reach the postseason and Trinity certainly did not play like a seventh seed," Gear McBride said. "They were well-prepared and up for the challenge and we are fortunate to advance."

The Mules still led by three points at 41-38 when Colby went on a 9-2 run to take a 52-40 margin. Colby led by as much as 60-45 with 5:12 to play, but the Bantams got as close as seven points when Arnstein hit a jumper with 51 seconds to play. Diana Manduca (Portland, Maine) hit two free throws to push the lead to nine before Arnstein hit one free throw for the final point of the game.


TRINITY (15-9)

Kaitlin Ciarleglio 6-14 6-6 19; Michelle Royals 4-11 3-5 12; Claire Arnstein

3-6 2-5 8; Christine Card 3-8 1-2 7; Carly Napier 1-3 1-1 3; Molly McGlynn

0-2 2-2 2; Rebecca Cohn 1-3 0-0 2; Heather Lyhne 1-2 0-0 2; Kristen Fahey

1-5 0-0 2; Jessica Sims 0-0 0-0 0; Sarah Ciarleglio 0-0 0-0 0; Tess Donie

0-4 0-0 0. Totals 20-58 15-21 57.

COLBY (22-3)

Aarika Ritchie 5-8 8-10 19; Alison Cappelloni 2-8 7-8 12; Samantha Allen 3-9

0-0 9; Rachael Mack 4-7 0-0 8; Jil Vaughan 1-1 3-4 5; Kelly Potvin 1-1 2-2

4; Diana Manduca 1-5 2-2 4; Julianne Kowalski 1-7 0-0 2; Jacky McLaughlin

1-2 0-0 2; Jayde Bennett 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 19-48 22-26 65.

Trinity.......................   29   28  -   57

Colby.........................   32   33  -   65

3-point goals--Trinity 2-15 (Kaitlin Ciarleglio 1-4; Michelle Royals 1-5;

Carly Napier 0-1; Kristen Fahey 0-1; Tess Donie 0-2; Claire Arnstein 0-2),

Colby 5-14 (Samantha Allen 3-6; Alison Cappelloni 1-3; Aarika Ritchie 1-2;

Diana Manduca 0-2; Jacky McLaughlin 0-1). Fouled out--Trinity-None,

Colby-None. Rebounds--Trinity 37 (Christine Card 9), Colby 35 (Jil Vaughan

7). Assists--Trinity 10 (Tess Donie 3), Colby 11 (Alison Cappelloni 3).

Total fouls--Trinity 22, Colby 19. Technical fouls--Trinity-None,

Colby-None. A-900

2010 Women's Basketball Championship Seeding

Quarterfinals – Saturday, February 20

Amherst 57, Wesleyan 36

Colby 65, Trinity 57

Bates 70, Williams 63

Bowdoin 65, Tufts 54


Semifinals – Saturday, February 27 at Amherst

No. 6 Bates at No. 1 Amherst, 2 p.m.

No. 5 Bowdoin vs.No. 2 Colby, 4 p.m.


Championship – Sunday, February 28 at 12:00 p.m. at Amherst

Semifinal winners


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