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Panthers roll over RIC in regular season finale

PLYMOUTH, N.H. - Junior Courtney Albert (Hudson, N.H.) scored a career-high 28 points Saturday afternoon, leading Plymouth State College's women's basketball team to a 79-59 Little East Conference victory over Rhode Island College in the final regular season game of the year at Foley Gymnasium.

PSC, which won its fifth straight game, wraps up the regular season at 17-7 overall and 9-5 in the conference. The Panthers finish in third place in the LEC, and will host sixth-seeded Western Connecticut State University this Tuesday (Feb. 19) at Foley Gym (5:30 p.m.) in the opening round of the 2002 LEC Tournament. RIC concludes its season at 5-20 overall and 2-12 in conference play.

Albert drained 12 of her 17 field goal attempts, while collecting seven rebounds. Freshman Heidi McAllister (Newport, N.H.) had a strong game off the Panther bench, scoring 12 points and grabbing six rebounds.

The Anchorwomen made a game of it in the first half, shooting 54 percent from the field and making a three-pointer at the buzzer to take a 36-34 lead at the break. The Panthers opened the second half with a 14-0 run to open up a 12-point bulge before pulling away the rest of the game.

The Panther defense forced 32 RIC turnovers, and limited the Anchorwomen to a .250 shooting percentage in the second half. PSC also outrebounded RIC 46-32, including a 29-15 advantage in the second half.

Sophomore Angela Sarette (Putnam, Conn.) had a solid performance for the Anchorwomen, finishing with 19 points, 10 rebounds and six steals. She scored all 19 of her points in the first half. Senior Melanie Wolf (Gorham, N.H.) chipped in with 10 points in a return to her home state.

PSC will be looking for its third straight win against Western Connecticut this season in Tuesday's play-off game. The Panthers defeated the Colonials 57-55 in Plymouth on Jan. 5th, and 62-50 in Danbury, Conn., on Feb. 2nd.

The LEC Tournament semi-finals and final will be at the University of Southern Maine in Gorham, Maine, next Friday and Saturday (Feb. 22-23), with the champion receiving an automatic berth into the NCAA Division III Championship Tournament.