Worcester, Mass. – Powered by a monster double-double from emerging star Ogechi Ezemma (Hope Valley, R.I.), Clark University won its third game of the year with an 83-61 win over Anna Maria on Tuesday afternoon in non-conference women's basketball action.
Score: Clark University 83, Anna Maria 61
Records: Clark University 3-1, Anna Maria 2-1
Location: Kneller Athletic Center, Worcester, Mass.
Clark used a huge second half scoring output where they outscored the AMCATS 45-25 while shooting 48 percent from the field.
After the Cougars opened the game up scoring the contest's first ten points and then built a 19-6 advantage after an Ezemma hoop with a little more than two minutes left in the opening stanza, Anna Maria roared back and were within three at 20-17 following a three-point bomb from Nicole Mareiro (Acushnet, Mass.) moments into the second quarter.
Clark answered back on a Kacey Legare (Chicopee, Mass.) triple but just a few minutes later after Christina Gauvin (Dudley, Mass.) dialed long range and then made a pair of free throws the AMCATS inched closer.
The visitors took their only lead of the game at 33-32 when Deja Taitt (Cambia Heights, N.Y.) posted back-to-back layups with less than three minutes to play in the half. The Scarlet and White were able to get the lead back in the closing seconds when Sam O'Gara (Worcester, Mass.) found a cutting Haley Wilder (Rindge, N.H.), giving the Cougars a 38-36 halftime lead.
Things were pretty even through most of the third quarter until Clark closed the period on an 8-0 run highlighted by consecutive layups from Ezemma and O'Gara, pushing the Scarlet and White advantage to 60-50 heading into the final quarter.
Mareiro kept the AMCATs within striking distance as she cut the Clark edge down to nine when she drilled her second three-pointer of the opening two minutes of the fourth period. The hosts, however, put the game away when they embarked on a 14-0 run featuring a layup from Aretha Sullivan (Worcester, Mass.) and three-pointers from Dominique St. Pierre (Portsmouth, N.H.) and Wilder.
When the dust cleared, the Cougars were in total control, ahead 79-56 with a little less than four minutes left to play.
Inside The Numbers:
More than half (12) of the shots made (18) by the AMCATS were three-pointers, led by Mareiro who connected on seven, finishing with a team-high 23 points and five rebounds off the bench.
Clark's big advantage came on the glass where they held a 52-28 edge which led to 26 second chance points and a 34-8 difference in points in the paint.
Ezemma led the way with career and game-highs of 24 points and 13 rebounds, while O'Gara totaled 18 points and five assists. Joining them in double figures were Wilder, who notched 14 points to go along with five rebounds and five assists and Sullivan chipped in with 12 points of her own.
Gauvin was the only other AMCAT in double figures, ending with 12 points, but Taitt posted nine points, five rebounds and a game-best seven assists.
The Cougars are off until Wednesday, November 30 when they open up league play against Mount Holyoke while Anna Maria visits Fitchburg State on Tuesday.