MILTON, Mass. – Curry College battled visiting Johnson & Wales University on Tuesday night and came up short by a final of 71-56 in non-conference action in Milton. With the win, the Wildcats improve to 2-1 on the season while the Colonels fall to 1-3 on the year.
Johnson & Wales jumped out to a 9-5 lead in the first quarter after two made free throws by Ally Mishol (Longmeadow, Mass). Erica Ulrich (Westminster, Mass.) cut the deficit to one at 9-8 with a made three pointer. The three sparked an 8-0 run for Ulrich to put the Colonels in front 13-9 and Curry closed the quarter with a layup by Sam Bamford (Easton, Mass.) with 26 seconds remaining but the Wildcats converted on their last possession to close trim the Colonel lead to 15-11 after the first quarter of play.
Johnson & Wales gained the lead in the second quarter after they went on 9-0 run to snag the lead at 22-15 with 6:54 to go in the first half. The Wildcats outscored Curry 25-10 in the second quarter and entered the locker room at the half with a 36-25 lead.
Sophomore Emily Irwin (Billerica, Mass.) led the Colonels with 15 points, six rebounds and four assists. Bamford joined Irwin as the only other Curry player in double-figures with 11.
Ashley Thompson (Bellingham, Mass.) led the offense for Johnson & Wales, scoring a game-high 16 points while pulling down seven rebounds. Raquel Pederzani (Coventry, R.I.) and Kimberly Viafara (Woodside, N.Y.) accompanied Thompson as the other two players in double figures with 12 and 11, respectively.
The Wildcats stretched their lead to 22 in the third quarter as they outscored Curry 25-13.
The Colonels would respond in the fourth quarter as they outscored Johnson & Wales 18-10. Irwin tallied the first five points of the stanza for Curry to trim the deficit to 65-43. The Colonels were able to cut the lead to under 20 points with 1:51 to go in regulation on two made free throws by Molly Plunkett (Quincy, Mass.).
Curry closed the game on a 13-0 run to make the final score 71-56.
Johnson & Wales shot 43.5% from the field for the game, compared to 31.7% for the Colonels. The Wildcats held the advantages in rebounds, assists, points off turnovers, second chance points and bench points. Curry held the edge in the turnover battle, converting seven less than the visitors (21-14).
Both teams will next play Saturday. Curry begins a four-game road trip at MCLA at 1 p.m. while Johnson & Wales opens play in the WPI Thanksgiving Tournament against Springfield at 4 p.m.