W&L Women's Basketball Downs Roanoke, 67-52

W&L Women's Basketball Downs Roanoke, 67-52

SALEM, Va. — The Washington and Lee women's basketball team forced Roanoke to commit 23 turnovers on Tuesday, as the Generals coasted to a 67-52 victory at the Cregger Center.

The Generals (5-3, 1-1 ODAC) came out aggressive in the opening quarter, scoring the first seven points of the game in three minutes. Senior guard Emily Perszyk (Greendale, Wis. / Greendale) notched a quick five points on a jumper and a three-pointer, and then senior forward Emma Redding (Allentown, Pa. / Central Catholic) registered a layup to stretch the lead to 7-0 at the 6:49 mark.

The Maroons (2-4, 1-1 ODAC) finally got on the board with 6:13 on the clock on a layup by junior forward Victoria Maxwell, but W&L answered with a 4-1 run over the next three minutes to grab an 11-3 advantage.

The teams went back and forth over the next six minutes of game action across the first and second stanzas, with the Generals holding a six-point lead, 20-14, with 6:41 remaining in the second. From there, the Blue and White went on an 11-2 surge over the next six minutes to take control of the contest.

Redding started the spurt with a layup off a post feed from first-year guard Katie Popp (Rye, N.Y. / Rye). Popp then stole the ball at midcourt and dribbled in for a wide-open layup to extend the margin to 10 (24-10).

A jumper by sophomore guard Molly Hassell at the 5:16 mark pulled the Maroons to within 8, 24-16, but then the W&L defense clamped down, holding Roanoke scoreless over its next six possessions. Sophomore forward Andy Smithey (Charlotte, N.C. / Saint Mary's School) drained a jumper with 3:08 left in the half, and then two free throws by first-year guard Erin Hughes (Raleigh, N.C. / Ravenscroft School) at the 2:37 mark stretched the lead to 28-16.

Popp capped the run with a triple with 50 seconds left in the half to give the Blue and White a 31-16 lead. Over the final 35 seconds, Roanoke netted two buckets to trim the deficit to 11 (31-20) at intermission.

In the second half, Roanoke would pull no closer than seven points, and the Blue and White eventually extended the advantage to 20 points midway through the fourth quarter before reaching the final margin.

Perszyk led W&L with 22 points, six rebounds and four assists. Popp had 13 points and three steals, and Redding contributed 10 points and five rebounds.

Hassell scored a team-best 13 points to pace Roanoke, while Maxwell recorded 12 points and a game-high 14 rebounds.

The Maroons held a 45-36 advantage on the glass, but the Blue and White had just 10 turnovers compared to Roanoke's 23. W&L shot 81.8 percent (18-of-22) from the foul line, while Roanoke made just 6-of-14 (42.9 percent) of its attempts from the charity stripe.

The Generals will now break for finals and next compete on December 20 against Illinois Tech at Daytona Beach at 4:00 pm.

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