Dec. 11, 2007
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Six different players combined to make 15 three-pointers on Tuesday evening and Villanova (8-2) cruised past visiting Massachusetts (4-6), 75-51, at the Pavilion. Senior Stacie Witman (Plymouth Meeting, Pa.) and junior Lisa Karcic (New Hyde Park, Pa.) each hit four shots from behind the arc to carry the Wildcats.
The long range shooting by Villanova included 10 three-pointers in the first half, when the Wildcats used a late 15-2 run to break the game open. Karcic scored 11 of her 18 points in the period and Villanova shot 52 percent in the half to lead 41-27 at halftime.
A three-pointer by Witman with 8:25 remaining in the first half jumpstarted the big run that enabled the Wildcats to pull away from a 26-21 advantage. Witman went on to score nine of the points in the 15-2 run, which culminated with a 41-23 Villanova lead with 3:15 to play in the opening period. The 14-point halftime margin was the smallest lead the rest of the way for the Wildcats, who outscored their visitors 45-9 from behind the three-point arc.
Witman finished with a game-high 21 points and six rebounds. Karcic finished 7-of-10 from the field for her 18 points and added four assists and two steals. Junior Laura Kurz (Lower Gwynedd, Pa.) added 13 points and sophomore Maria Getty (Centerville, Ohio) tallied 11 points and a career-high six assists.
Kate Mills shot 8-of-10 from the floor and led the Minutewomen with 18 points. Massachusetts had no other players score in double figures and committed 15 turnovers while not recording a block or a steal in the contest.
Villanova, meanwhile, turned the ball over a season-low six times and posted a 25-to-6 assist-to-turnover ratio. Nine different players dished out helpers in the game, with Karcic and sophomore Tia Grant (Lido Beach, N.Y.) each having four to follow the six by Getty. Junior Siobhan O'Connor (West Chester, Pa.) came off the bench to add three points, three assists and six rebounds.
The Minutewomen scored the final four points of the first half to stand within striking distance in the game, but the second half opened with a 15-3 Wildcat spurt in the first 5:09 of the period. Four different players scored during the run and Witman poured in eight more points to open up a 56-30 advantage with 14:51 to play. Villanova led by as many as 28 points in the closing minutes before settling on the final margin.
It will be a short turnaround for the Wildcats coming off the victory, as the team hosts Binghamton on Thursday at 7 p.m. That game will mark the end of a six-game home stretch for Villanova and marks the team's final game before an eight-day layoff for final exams.