WORCESTER, Mass. – Worcester State University's junior Britt Herring (West Brookfield, Mass.) scored a team-high 17 points enroute to her 1,000th career point as the No. 4 seeded Lancers defeated the No. 5 seeded Salem State Vikings in a Tuesday evening Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) quarterfinal overtime thriller.
February 20, 2018
Score: Worcester State 74, Salem State 60 (OT)
Records: Worcester State (13-13) | Salem State (9-17)
Salem State jumped out to a 4-0 lead on a layup from Norma Wagett (Saugus, Mass.) and a pair of free throws from Tyra Scott (Methuen, Mass.). Worcester State's senior Brianna Hackett (Hollis, N.H.) broke the nil Lancer score with a triple two and a half minutes in. Brianna Rodriguez (Salem, Mass.) put the visitors' lead back at four with a triple of her own on the next possession. The game saw a tie at 7-7, but Salem State took back the lead with a Scott jumper with 3:33 to go in the quarter. The Vikings led 12-10 going into the second.
Worcester State took control in the second quarter, as they outscored their opponents 19-7 in the frame. Kate Surprenant (Pelham, N.H.) tied the score at 12-12 just over a minute in, and Herring gave the Lancers their first lead of the game on Worcester State's next possession. Christina Corey (Methuen, Mass.) knotted the score at 14-14, but Worcester State's Sam Ellis (Grafton, Mass.) sparked a 12-2 run with 8:27 to go. Salem State's Scott broke the Lancer scoring binge with a layup just under two minutes to go. Though, free throws from Kaitlyn Berkel (Waterford, Conn.) and Ellis gave the Lancers back a 10-point advantage going into the intermission.
The Lancers saw a 15-point lead midway through the third quarter when Hackett drained a triple. The Lancers attained a greater lead with three minutes to go with a Berkel and-one (45-27). Despite the 18-point lead for the Lancers, Salem State battled back and ended the quarter with a 7-4 run to cut the margin to 14. Moschella tallied six points in the third quarter for the Vikings.
Salem State chipped away at the Lancers' lead in the fourth and made it a 10-point game with 7:59 on the clock following a Gianna Moschella (Peabody, Mass.) free throw. After an Emily Carens (Northborough, Mass.) jumper on the other end of the court, the Vikings trimmed the lead to just seven when Rodriguez drained a trey, stole the ball on the opposing end and Scott made a layup on the next possession. The Vikings kept battling and ultimately they used an 11-point run to attain a 61-59 lead with 43 seconds on the clock. It came down to a free throw shooting battle. The Vikings missed all four of their free throw shots in the last 30 seconds of the game to keep the score at 61-59. Worcester State had two free throw opportunities with just seconds on the clock, but missed both. Worcester State's rookie Sam Maglione (Lancaster, Mass.) was on the other end of Herring's missed free throw and got fouled on an attempt at a basket. Maglione sunk the pair of free throws to knot the score at 61-61 and send the game into overtime.
Each team saw a lead in the first two minutes of the overtime period, but with 2:47 on the clock, Worcester State's Berkel and Herring teamed up in the paint to begin a 9-0 run, capped off by a Maglione 3-pointer. In the last 20 seconds of the overtime period, Salem State's Moschella and Waggett netted three's to get within four, but Hackett closed out the game with a made free throw for a 74-69 final score.
"Our team played hard and didn't give up down the stretch despite giving up the lead," said head women's basketball coach Karen Tessmer. "We overcame foul trouble and our freshman made some key baskets."
Tessmer also commented on Herring reaching her 1,000th career point, "It is a great accomplishment as a junior. It reflects her hard work and great teamwork. We are very proud of her accomplishment and we hope she continues to excel and help our team win."
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Salem State's Moschella led all scoring with 19 points, going 7-for-11 (63.6%) from the field.
- Rodriguez went 3-for-6 (50%) from 3-point range and totaled 13 points with a game-high six assists and five steals for Salem State.
- Scott chipped in 10 points, while Kia Fernandes (Wareham, Mass.) led the board with 12, and put up nine points for the Vikings.
- Waggett finished with seven points and nine rebounds.
- Herring reached her 1,000th career point in the fourth quarter of the game, and finished with a double-double of 17 points and 15 rebounds with a game-high seven blocks and a team-high five assists.
- Berkel also scored 17 points for the Lancers, and added in eight rebounds and three assists.
- Hackett made three triples and added in three free throw shots for a total of 12 points.
- As a team, Worcester State shots 47.4% (27-57) from the floor, and 30.8% (4-13) from 3-point range.
- Salem State shot just 34.8% (24-69) from the field, but a stunning 53.8% (7-13) from beyond the arc.
- Both teams shot 50% from the free throw line.
- Worcester State outrebounded the Vikings, 48-39.
Worcester State will travel to the top-seeded Westfield State on Thursday (Feb. 22) for a 7 p.m. semifinal game.