Women’s basketball loses 72–57

The Carnegie Mellon women’s basketball team wrapped up its 2006–2007 season on Saturday with a trip to Rochester, N.Y., to play the 21st-ranked University of Rochester Yellowjackets in University Athletic Association (UAA) action. The Tartans’ strong start did not last as the Yellowjackets took the lead and pulled away to win the game 72–57.

The Tartans started out hot and led 8–2 after a three-pointer by sophomore guard Stacie Aleski less than two minutes into the game. They held a slight advantage over the Yellowjackets throughout the majority of the first half. Every time Rochester took a lead, the Tartans answered with points of their own. The Tartans led 26–24 with 4:23 left in the half before Rochester buckled down and reeled off an 11–2 run to go into halftime ahead 35-28.

Sophomore guard Colleen Light started the second half with a three-pointer to pull the Tartans within four points.

The following nine minutes proved to be the difference in the game, as Rochester scored 20 straight points while the Tartans turned the ball over eight times and missed five straight shots. Over the final ten minutes the Tartans regained their form to outscore the Yellowjackets 26–17, at the end losing by 15 points.

“I don’t remember most of the second half,” senior guard Nora Darcher said about playing in her last game. “It was a blur. You sit there thinking ‘this is my last half’ and then it’s over and you don’t even realize that it’s over. I think I’m in denial, but I feel that I have another season ahead of me.”

Junior forward Leah Feola led the Tartans with 14 points and senior guard Ashley Mazziotta, playing in her final game, added 10 points. Sophomore forward Ashley Rothwell led the Tartans with nine rebounds.

The Tartans were out-rebounded 42–30 in the game and Carnegie Mellon committed 24 turnovers compared to Rochester’s 18.

“We were still a young team and I know that we will do amazing things next year,” Darcher said. “With a healthy sophomore class these girls are going to not only beat a few UAA teams, but do some damage. I don’t think the girls realize their potential, but next year they should be ready to be contenders for the title. Our competition will forget about us as contenders, and that’s their mistake.”
Feola finished as the leading scorer for the Tartans on the season, averaging 11.3 points per game (ppg). Rothwell averaged 10.5 ppg and sophomore point guard Stacie Aleski averaged 10.0.

“I am going to miss being a Tartan,” Darcher said. “These last four years have been very memorable and I don’t want them to end.”

The Tartans finish the season with a record of 8–17 overall and 2–12 in the UAA.