MEDFORD – Behind a career-high 28 points from senior Erica DeCandido the No. 1 Tufts women's team picked up a 78-60 win to open NESCAC play in Cousens Gym on Friday night.
|DeCandido added ten rebounds, three assists and three steals to her 28 points|
The Jumbos improve to 14-0 overall and 1-0 in conference play. Wesleyan is now 8-4 overall and 0-1 NESCAC play.
The first quarter was the closest of the game as the Cardinals led for a good part of it. With things locked at four a couple of minutes into play the Cardinals got two free throws from Caleigh Ryan to take a 6-4 lead. Sophomore Molly Ryan put the Jumbos back on top with a three with 6:24 left in the quarter. A layup from Ava Tompkins with 5:54 remaining put the Cardinals on top, 8-7. Down 13-10 with 3:33 left in the quarter, the Jumbos got a layup from junior Emily Briggs and then a three from Ryan with 2:54 left in the quarter put the Jumbos ahead, 15-13. The Jumbos would not trail after that, leading 21-16 at the end of the quarter.
The first half of the second quarter was back and forth as the Jumbos held their lead. Ahead 25-21 with 6:55 left in the second DeCandido turned in a layup, and then a three on the Jumbos next possession to push the Jumbo lead to nine. After a three from Wesleyan's Marina Petruzzi, Briggs made a jumper and then a jumper from senior Sadie Otley put the Jumbos ahead by ten halfway through the second quarter. Briggs made a layup for the Jumbos and then the Cardinals answered with a three from Emma Roush. But, Ryan turned in a three on the other end of the court and Otley added a layup to put the Jumbos ahead, 41-27, with just over a minute left in the quarter. The Jumbos took a 43-30 led into the break.
Coming out of halftime the Jumbos pushed their lead to 17 with back-to-back layups from Briggs. The Cardinals got back in it a bit, outscoring the Jumbos in the quarter 19-15. But, the Jumbos lead was too much to overcome, and Tufts was still leading 58-49 after the third quarter.
The Jumbos outscored the Cardinals 20-11 in the fourth quarter on their way to a 78-60 win.
DeCandido led all scorers with 28 points, a career-high for the senior. She also added ten rebounds, three assists and three steals. Ryan finished with 17 points, including five threes, and also added five rebounds, three assists and a couple of steals and blocks. Briggs tallied 15 points, two rebounds and three assists. Otley added seven points and six boards, and Rosa turned in five points and four boards off the bench.
Four different players finished with double-digit points for the Cardinals. Petruzzi led them with 12 points and three rebounds. Maddie Clark, Ryan and Katy O'Connor all added 11 points. Ryan added eight rebounds and O'Connor finished with seven. Rousch turned in seven points and three boards off the bench.
The Jumbos are back in action on Friday when they travel to Hamilton for a 7 pm start. Wesleyan plays again on Sunday with a trip to Bates for a 2 pm start.