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Lady Panthers Win Senior Night, Drop Playoff Game

By Kameron Towle; For the Clock
On February 23, 2017

Lady Panthers Win Senior Night, Drop Playoff Game 

Best Regular Season Finish in Years, but WCSU too Tough on Road

Kameron Towle

For The Clock 

The Plymouth State University Women’s Basketball team defeated Western Connecticut State University 68-64 in overtime on Saturday, February 18th on Senior Day at Foley Gymnasium. Senior Ace Lawrence (Middletown, Conn.) led the Lady Panthers with a game-high 17 points and her classmate Annaliese Schmidt (Newmarket, N.H.) posted her second-straight double-double.

With PSU trailing by a point with under 30 seconds remaining in OT, it was sophomore Cassidy Emerson (Concord, N.H.) who came up with the big play; an old-fashioned three-point play to give them the lead. On the other end, Schmidt drew a charge with 11 seconds left and the Lady Panthers were able to seal the win by knocking down key free throws.

The Little East Conference victory sealed their fate as the number five seed in the LEC tournament, and their opponent would be Western Connecticut once again, as they held the 4 seed, respectively.

The game was played at Feldman Arena in Danbury, Connecticut on Tuesday night, as the 8-16 Panthers tried to come in and upset the 14-11 Colonials on their home court. The Colonials only let up 15 first half-points to PSU, including only 6 points in the first quarter. The first half ended with a steal by PSU senior Savannah Miller (Smithtown, N.Y.) and then a made jumper on the other end, but the score was 28-15 in favor of Western Connecticut.

In the third quarter, the Lady Panthers made a run to get the game down to seven points after a jump shot by sophomore Kailyn Aguiar (Acushnet, Mass.) brought the score to 37-30. In the final seconds of the quarter, Western Connecticut senior Samantha Smith (Wallingford, Conn.), drained a three-pointer to make it a 10 point game heading into the final frame. The Colonials would run away with the lead in the fourth, with the help from a stretch that included a Smith three and jump shots from junior Nicole Mierzejewski (Meriden, Conn.) and senior Emily Dobson (Westerly, R.I.). This little run put Western Connecticut up by 20 with under 3 minutes to play and that would seal the Lady Panthers fate, with the final score coming to 59-42.

Dobson led the Colonials with a game-high 20 points to go with 9 rebounds. Smith contributed with 15 points and 7 boards off the bench. For PSU, senior Kayla Wyland (Melrose, Mass.) scored 9 points and grabbed 9 rebounds, while Schmidt added 8 points and 10 rebounds.

The Colonials move on in the LEC tournament while the Lady Panthers’ season comes to an end at 8-17.

The Panthers would post their best regular season in years, with more wins in the LEC than in the past five years combined. Led by Kayla Wyland and Ace Lawrence, the Panthers will lose five other seniors: Maddy Beatrice (Newton, Mass.), Savannah Miller, Annaliese Schmidt, Leah Swanson (Atkinson, NH) and Lindsy Poulin (Goffstown, NH). 

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