SCRANTON, PA – The historic 2013-14 Vassar College women’s basketball season came to an end Saturday evening, as the Brewers fell to site host University of Scranton 72-71 in the NCAA Tournament Second Round. Vassar College concludes a campaign that witnessed it’s first-ever NCAA win, its third Liberty League title in four years and a school record 23 wins.
The Brewers (23-6) shot the ball extremely well in the first half, knocking down 56.3 percent of their shots in the opening period. All seven players dressed for Vassar posted a bucket in the opening stanza, led by the 13 points from sophomore guard Caitlin Drakeley. The Brewers led for most of the first frame, leading by as much as six on two occasions.
The Royals (26-3) finished the period on an 8-2 run, knotting the score at 39 apiece at the break as Lia DiSciascio nailed a three-pointer from the corner at the buzzer. Alexix Roman was dominant for the Royals in the first half, going 8-of-9 from the field, leading all scorers with 18 points. Scranton held a 28-16 lead in paint points, but the Brewers benefited from seven assists from Cydni Matsuoka.
Vassar burst out of the intermission, scoring the first 11 points of the second half to take a 50-39 lead with 15:40 to go. The Brewers’ advantage would swell to as much as 13 after a three-pointer from Matsuoka with 9:29 on the clock, prompting a timeout by Scranton. The Royals came out of the hiatus and put together a 10-0 spurt, trimming the Vassar edge to three with 5:20 to go.
The hosts tied the game with 3:31 to go in the game on a pair of free throws by Sarah Payonk, and took its first lead since 22-20 with 2:37 to play in the game on a Roman layup. The Brewers and Royals would exchange buckets over the next four possessions, leading to the game being tied at 71 with 31 seconds left. On the next time down for Scranton, Roman was fouled and made one of two, but a turnover by VC after a defensive rebound sealed the game for the Royals.
Drakeley finished with a career-high 28 points for the Brewers, as she was spectacular for the visitors. The sophomore guard made 12-of-22 from the floor, pulling in six rebounds as well. Matsuoka finished her legendary career with the Brewers with a complete game, making six of the eight field goals she took for 15 points, dishing out nine assists and pulling in seven rebounds. She finished with 1,923 points in her career, the most in Vassar College program history.
Senior Hannah Senftleber scored 11 points in her final game, as VC shot an even 50 percent (31-62) from the floor. Junior Nyah Berg came off the bench to score six points, and Michaela Janowski was amazing defensively, also scoring four points.