Women's Hoops Falls At Williams

January 31, 2009

Taylor Shea of Williams scored 17 of her team-high 24 points in the second half Saturday, rallying Williams past Middlebury, 79-68, at the Chandler Gymnasium. The Ephs trailed Middlebury by as many as 14 points in the first half before cutting that deficit to 10 by the break. A 13-0 run to start the second half gave them a lead and Shea took over down the stretch to help Williams improve to 8-12 overall, 3-2 in the NESCAC. The Panthers, who were led by Emily Johnson's game-high 31 points, fell to 7-13 overall, 1-4 in the conference.

Both Shea (24 points, 12 rebounds) and Jess Harris (16 points, 16 rebounds) posted double-doubles for Williams. Chessie Jackson added 13 points, while first-year point guard Jill Greenberg dished off 10 assists.

Aside from Johnson's 31 points on 12 of 22 shooting, Middlebury received double-figure scoring with 14 points from Ashley Barron and 11 from Lauren Sanchez.

Following the Ephs big run to start the second half, the Panthers responded with a drive to the hoop by Barron, a three-pointer off the right wing from Johnson and, following a turnover, a transition lay-up by Johnson for a 54-50 lead.

A steal by Shea led to her coast-to-coast layup that regained the lead for Williams at 56-54 with 14:02 remaining, and Shea's 12-foot baseline jumper moments later upped that lead to four.

Middlebury rallied again to tie the game at 60 on a baseline floater from Barron, but the Ephs took the lead for good on a free throw from Ana Rodriguez-Villa (nine points) with 10:50 to go. Jackson connected on a key trey from the top of the key for a 64-60 lead that sparked a 10-0 run for the Ephs.

Williams defensive effort in the second half made the difference. The Ephs held Middlebury to just 8 of 28 from the floor (28.8 percent) and out rebound their opponents, 26-20. Shea switched to Barron and held her to two points over the final 20 minutes.

Johnson hit 7 of 11 shots in the first half, 4 of 6 from beyond the arc, to help the Panthers build a 47-37 lead by halftime.