Lawrence, Wyland secure Coach Flynn's first career victory
NEW LONDON, N.H. – Juniors Ace Lawrence (Middletown, Conn.) and Kayla Wyland (Melrose, Mass.) were dominant in leading Plymouth State University past in-state rival Colby-Sawyer College, 70-56, in women's basketball action Tuesday night. The outcome marked the first career victory for new PSU head coach Allison Flynn.
Lawrence was on fire, connecting on 8-of-13 attempts – including 4-of-5 from long range – as she paced the Panther offense with a career-high 26 points to go along with four assists and three steals. Wyland posted an impressive double-double with 19 points and 14 rebounds, while adding four assists and a pair of steals. Senior Taylor Perry (Simsbury, Conn.) was the third Panther in double figures, adding 11 points while connecting on 3-of-5 from downtown. Plymouth State improves to 1-4 on the year.
Colby-Sawyer (1-2) was led by junior Kristin Ellis (South Easton, Mass.), who finished with 10 points, 17 rebounds and four assists. Senior Jessica Shenkel (Sharon, Mass.) added 16 points, while sophomore Amanda Calvo (South Deerfield, Mass.) chipped in with 12 points off the bench.
|Coach Allison Flynn|
The first quarter featured four lead changes and a pair of ties. Plymouth State raced out to a 9-5 lead, capped by a Lawrence jumper. Colby-Sawyer responded with a 10-2 run in the next three minutes to take a 15-11 lead. The Panthers jumped back in front when Lawrence and Perry combined for three consecutive three-pointers to give PSU a 20-15 lead, before a Calvo long-ball ended the frame with Plymouth leading 20-18.
Another Perry triple opened the scoring in the second quarter, but the Chargers tied the game at 23-23 after a Shenkel three with 6:33 remaining in the half. Plymouth State would use an 11-2 run, including five points from Wyland, to take a 34-25 advantage into halftime. The Panthers were 5-of-6 from beyond the arc in the opening half, while holding the Chargers to just 25% shooting (9-of-36).
PSU was solid offensively in the third quarter, shooting an even 50% from the floor (9-of-18). The Panthers were sparked by freshman Kailyn Aguiar (Acushnet, Mass.) who had six points in seven minutes without a miss (3-of-3). Lawrence added a pair of three-pointers, while Wyland had a near double-double in the quarter alone (six points, seven rebounds). A layup from Aguiar with six seconds remaining in the period gave Plymouth its biggest lead of the night, 56-38.
Colby-Sawyer opened the fourth quarter with a 16-6 run to cut the deficit to eight, 62-54, with 3:27 left to play. But Lawrence connected on a pair of free throws, then Perry came away with a steal, which led to a Wyland jumper and the Panthers would lead by double-digits the rest of the way.
Plymouth State finished the night shooting 43.5% (27-of-62), and connected on a blistering 70% (7-of-10) from long range, while Colby-Sawyer shot it at 30.4% (21-of-69) and 33.3% (9-of-27) from downtown. PSU out-rebounded the Chargers 46-43, but owned a 17-2 advantage in second chance points.
Plymouth State will play its final four games of the semester at home in Foley Gymnasium, starting with Thursday's non-conference match-up with Lyndon State College (5:30 p.m.). Colby-Sawyer will begin North Atlantic Conference (NAC) play tomorrow at home against Green Mountain College (5:30 p.m.).
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