Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Tribe Women’s Basketball’s Balanced Attack Earns Hard-Fought Win vs. Elon

(Tribe Athletics)

WILLIAMSBURG — Trailing by as much as 13 in the middle of the second quarter, William & Mary women’s basketball used balanced scoring and ball movement for a come-from-behind 73-61 win over Elon on Friday at Kaplan Arena.

W&M (13-11, 9-4 CAA) were led by three players in double figures, with Anahi-Lee Cauley and Nylah Young scoring 18 each, while Bella Nascimento chipped in 15.

20 of the Tribe’s 26 field goals were assisted with all 10 players who saw playing time picking up at least one helper.

After a quick layup from Cassidy Geddes on W&M’s first possession, Elon (9-18, 5-9 CAA) embarked on a 15-2 run, holding a 11-point advantage with 4:56 remaining in the first quarter.

Nascimento scored the final five points of the first for the hosts, but the Tribe still trailed 20-11 after one.

An early stepback jumper from Cauley pulled it to a 20-15 Phoenix lead early in the second, but again the visitors went on a run, this time a 12-4 spurt, to hold their largest lead of the night, 32-19, with 4:48 remaining in the half.

A converted three-point-play and a triple from Cassidy Geddes made it a 32-25 game less than 90 seconds later, before some emotional fireworks boiled over. After a contested rebounded some pushing and shoving occurred resulting in multiple people from the Elon bench being ejected for leaving the bench area during the dust up.

When the half finally came to a close, four technical fouls had been issued in the final 2:03 of the quarter, two a side.

The Tribe used the heightened energy in the building to spark a late run, with Young hitting a jumper with nine seconds left, to give the Green and Gold a 36-34 halftime lead.

Young finished with 12 points in the quarter alone and the Tribe shot 8-for-15 from the field to get back in the game.

When the second half began, Young picked up right where she left off, scoring twice, with her second bucket making the W&M lead 42-38 with 7:21 on the clock.

She then handed the reigns over to Cauley, who scored eight of the final nine points for the Tribe in the third. Nascimento added a free throw late in the quarter and the Tribe led 51-46 after three.

Cauley finished 8-of-9 from the floor on the evening, her most efficient game on the season, while also adding three assists and three rebounds to her 18 points.

Geddes knocked down another 3-pointer to kick off the fourth, with Cauley scoring into the paint moments later, to give the Tribe a 56-46 lead.

The Phoenix would get within seven multiple times, the last being with 5:08 on the clock, but that was as close as they would get.

Monet Dance, Rebekah Frisby-Smith and Bella Nascimento all hit from deep down the stretch to secure a 73-61 Tribe victory.

Frisby-Smith stuffed the stat sheet in front of an energetic home crowd, grabbing a “triple nickel” with six points, six rebounds and five assists.

W&M finished the game 46% from the floor and 8-for-18 from three, while Elon ended up 31% from the field and 7-of-22 from deep. The Tribe held the Phoenix 2-of-their-last-12 from three after the visitors made 5 in their first 10 tries.

The Green and Gold also owned the battle on the glass 41-38, to go with their 20 assists. The 20 dimes are the most by the Tribe in conference play this year.

Cauley, Alexa Mikeska and Geddes each had three assists behind Frisby-Smith’s five.

Up Next
The Tribe takes on Hampton at 1 p.m. Sunday at Kaplan Arena. The game will be W&M’s Play4Kay game, supporting breast cancer awareness. The game will be broadcast on FloHoops.

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