Women’s Basketball: Four double-digit scorers pace Norwich in 51-point win over Lesley

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – A 47-11 run between the second and third quarters helped the Norwich University women’s basketball team cruise to an 81-30 non-conference victory over the Lesley University Lynx in non-conference action in Andrews Hall on Tuesday night.

Four double-digit scorers paced the offensive effort for the Cadets, spearheaded by a pair of 16-point efforts by Silas Bernier (Jaffrey, N.H.) and Haley Brewster (Virginia Beach, Va.).  Maren McGinn (Georgia, Vt.) anchored the offense inside, posting 15 points and a game-best eight rebounds, while Rachel Botala (Grand Isle, Vt.) clocked in a perfect 4-4 performance from the floor en route to 10 points and a career-high five assists.

Both the Cadets and the Lynx struggled to garner much separation from one another in the opening quarter, as back-to-back jumpers from Lesley’s Alexandra Kerley gave the Lynx a two-point lead.  A subsequent 6-6 deadlock would be broken by an 8-0 Norwich run to end the quarter, before the Norwich defense ramped up in the second stanza to hold Lesley scoreless for over five minutes.

A 28-5 second quarter, followed by a 19-6 third quarter, would give the Cadets a 42-point cushion heading into the final frame.  A jumper from Sophia Torres would get the Lynx back within 40, but Norwich’s stout defense prevented any further threat as the Cadets extended their lead to a game-high 51 on two occasions, courtesy of baskets from Erin Reynolds (Croton-on-Hudson, N.Y.) and Siobhan O’Donnell (Glendale, N.Y.).

“I was very pleased with our team’s effort tonight, particularly on the defensive end of the floor.  Holding this team, who had been averaging 64.5 points-per-game, to 30 points on 20.0% shooting overall is quite an accomplishment.  It was a total team performance with everyone contributing,” Head Coach Mark Zacher said.  “It was good to see everyone on the floor, executing our game plan at both ends, and supporting one another in this outstanding win.  We are a young, learning, and growing team and are making steps forward with every outing.”

The Cadets dominated in every statistical category, including points off turnovers (33-12), second chance points (21-2), points in the paint (32-10), and fast break points (13-1).  Norwich held a 47-19 edge in the rebounding battle, while shooting 43.5% (27-62) from the floor and a blistering 85.7% (24-28) from the charity stripe.  The Cadets’ defense held the Lynx to just 20.0% on field goals, including a 0-16 clip from long range.

Norwich will now look ahead to the Barre Granite Association College Classic, hosted by the Barre Auditorium in Barre, Vt.  The Cadets will entertain a pair of intrastate foes in NVU-Johnson on Friday, Nov. 18, and NVU-Lyndon on Saturday, Nov. 19.  Tip-off against the Badgers is set for 1:00 p.m., while competition against the Hornets will begin at 4:00 p.m.