The women’s basketball team has little to be thankful for after dropping to 0-4 against some tough opponents over the holiday break.
The Bulldogs suffered two defeats this weekend at the Wonder/Hostess Buckeye Classic in Columbus, Ohio after falling twice the previous weekend.
The Elis took a serious beating in the opening round of the Buckeye Classic Saturday evening at St. John Arena, losing 80-43 to host Ohio State.
Erica Davis ’07 led the Bulldogs in scoring, opening the contest with a lay-up to score two of her 14 points on the day after a pass from center Julie Mantilla ’07.
The nationally-ranked No. 11 Buckeyes took over from there. After a 7-0 run, Ohio State took a 15-6 lead and doubled that margin by halftime, 39-21.
The Bulldogs fared no better in the second half as the Buckeyes opened with a 20-2 run to pull even further away. OSU finished the second half shooting 16-for-23 (.696) from the floor and hitting 56.1 percent of its shots for the game.
Buckeye center Jessica Davenport led the game with 18 points. Morgan Richards ’05 and Sara McCollum ’08 each scored eight points for Yale.
Forward Lindsay Page ’05 said she was disappointed with the loss but was pleased with the team’s performance against Ohio State.
“We were playing with some of the best in the nation, and I think we played well,” Page said.
In Sunday’s consolation game against Detroit, the Elis got off to a rough start when the Titans took an early 13-2 lead in the first half which led to a decisive 69-56 victory.
Detroit extended its lead to 22-8, before the Bulldogs pushed to reduce the deficit to 29-18 at the half.
Although the Bulldogs outscored Detroit throughout most of the second half, the Titans sank 11 consecutive free throws in the final two minutes as the Elis were forced to foul in order to regain possession.
The Bulldogs came within 8 points of Detroit on three occasions, but they were never able to close the gap, trailing the Titans for the entire game.
“We never came out hard until we had to play catch-up,” Davis said. “We forced ourselves to fight our way back. That was essentially our downfall.”
Yale’s top scorer, Tory Mauseth ’05, garnered 10 points and four assists for the Bulldogs, while Detroit’s Lindsey Pasquinzo finished with 22 points, seven rebounds and four assists.
Although the Bulldogs shot 41.2 percent for the game while holding Detroit to 32.4 percent, they trailed the Titans in field goal attempts and rebounds. The Elis also finished with 25 turnovers compared to Detroit’s 10.
“I think we didn’t come out with the right mindset for the game,” forward Eleanor Miller ’07 said. “We came out too focused on winning and not really focused enough on how we were going to do that.”
Other top scorers for the Elis included Davis with nine points and Chinenye Okafor ’07 and Page with eight points each.
The Elis ran into some bumps as they officially opened the season November 19 at John J. Lee Amphitheater with a 66-53 loss to Sacred Heart.
Both teams started out slow but Yale took the early advantage and broke out in the opening minutes with a 13-5 lead. The game quickly took a turn for the worse, however, as the Pioneers tallied off 17 unanswered points with 9:17 remaining in the first half to take the lead for the rest of the contest.
Sacred Heart held the Elis to 29.2 percent shooting for the first half as they pulled away from the home team with a 32-16 halftime lead.
With 20 turnovers in the first half, the Bulldogs had to regroup after halftime if they wanted to stay alive for the rest of the game.
Davis and Mauseth both stepped up in the second half to pull closer to the Pioneers. Davis scored 13 of her team-high 18 points in the second half and pulled down five rebounds for the game. Mauseth also scored 12 of her 15 points on the day in the second half.
Yale outscored Sacred Heart 24-8 in the final 8:16 of the game, but it was not enough to overcome the early deficit.
Four Pioneers scored in double digits, including forward Nicolle Rubino with 18 points, guard Kerri Burke with 15, and guard Amanda Pape with 11.
Okafor added 10 points for the Bulldogs.
Against Syracuse Sunday evening, Davis led the way again for the Elis, scoring a game-high 21 points and nabbing eight rebounds at home. But the Orange snuck past the Bulldogs late in the game to steal the win, 65-61.
With the Bulldogs trailing most of the second half, McCollum tied the game at 52-52 on a follow-up of a jump shot from Mantilla. Mauseth capped off the Bulldogs’ 6-0 run with two free throws to take the lead with 2:46 remaining in the game.
Syracuse responded with a 5-0 run to take a 57-54 lead with 2:22 remaining. From then on the Orange never looked back, as they held the small edge over the Elis while the clock dwindled down.
Miller said the Bulldog’s primary weakness so far this season is turnovers. Between the Sacred Heart and Syracuse games, the Bulldogs had 64 turnovers.
“We out-rebounded them in both games, but we have to work on cutting down our turnovers. That’s the reason we lost the games,” she said.