AURORA, N.Y. – Sparked by the 78th career double-double by senior Ashley Roser (Taberg, N.Y.), the Wells College women's basketball team posted their seventh-straight victory on Sunday against the College of Saint Elizabeth. After the 75-70 victory by the Express, the hosts move to 15-7 overall on the season and to 10-3 within the North Eastern Athletic Conference. The Screaming Eagles fall to 15-8 overall and to 9-5 within league play.
Wells extends their program record winning streak, which currently stands at seven heading into their next game this Wednesday against Morrisville State College. The Express have already set program records this season in overall victories (15), fewest losses (7), best home record (8-2), team scoring average (68.4), field goal percentage (.382) and rebounding average (51).
With her 59th career double-double against a league opponent, Roser scored 20 points and added 15 total rebounds following a 7-for-12 performance from the floor. She also moves to sole possession of third place all-time in NCAA Division III history with 78 double-doubles. Her three blocks were also a team-best mark. Sophomore Holli Erkson (Cooperstown, N.Y.) ranked second on the squad with 10 total points. Additionally, Erkson tied with junior Cassie Smythe (Eden, N.Y.) as both notched two three-pointers in the win. Senior Kristen Ryan (Syracuse, N.Y.) assisted six Wells baskets, a team-leading mark.
With 14 ties and 13 total lead changes, the Express and Screaming Eagles were engaged in a heated battle throughout regulation time. Wells led by as much as eight points with 1:51 remaining in the first half, using a three-pointer by Smythe to open up a 29-21 lead in the waning minutes. The Screaming Eagles, however, struck for the half's final seven points as Ashley Pledger singlehandedly scored all seven, including a clutch three-pointer with eight seconds left in the frame.
In the second half alone, both teams tied the score a whopping nine times. Trailing by a 68-67 margin with 3:57 left in the contest, the Express utilized two foul shots by Erkson with 2:51 left to take the lead for good. From there, Wells forced a turnover that led to a layup by junior Jessilyn Artaho-Aki (Kapa'a, Hawaii) with 1:31 left, elevating Wells to a 71-68 lead. With five seconds left, Roser struck for back-to-back foul shots to create a 73-68 lead. Pledger and Erkson each buried two free throws down the stretch to maintain the five point margin of victory.
Kelly O'Dell and Pledger led the Screaming Eagles with 15 total points with the former chipping in with a team-leading nine boards. Danesha Triplett registered 14 total points while Amerisse Rogers accounted for 10 of her team's 70 points. O'Dell also led the team with four assists while tying for the team lead in steals (three) with Cheyenne Grant.
Wells returns to action this Wednesday, Feb. 19 as they face-off against Morrisville State College on the road at 7:00 p.m.