Jan. 25, 2011
NORTH DARTMOUTH, MA-The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's women's basketball team lost to visiting Rhode Island College, 89-53, on a night that saw senior guard Tashauna Ashmeade (Hyannis, MA/Barnstable) become the fifth women's basketball player in Corsairs' history to reach the 1,000 point plateau, in the first game of a Little East Conference doubleheader at the Tripp Athletic Center Tuesday evening.
Not since the 1995-96 season, when Christine Lentini (North Easton, MA) accomplished the feat, has a Corsair women's basketball player eclipsed the mark. Ashmeade came into the game against the Anchorwomen needing just three points to achieve the milestone. She reached the magical mark when she buried a three pointer with 13:51 to play in the first half.
"I have watched Tashauna develop over the last three years into a top player in the LEC," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Amanda Van Voorhis. "She has improved her fitness and foot speed in order to play a wing for us this season. Her shot selection has led to several big games for our team and positioned her to earn this outstanding achievement. She is taking higher percentage shots that have increased her totals and made her a legitimate offensive threat. Her offensive contributions and leadership will be missed next year."
Ashmeade finished the game with 11 points, bringing her career total to 1,008.
The Corsairs jumped out to a quick 4-0 advantage on layups by junior guard Stephanie Houtman (New Bedford, MA/New Bedford/Bridgewater State) and freshman guard Megan Sheehan (Carver, MA/Carver) but it was short-lived as the Anchorwomen would rally with 21 unanswered points before Ashmeade's memorable three.
The Anchorwomen led 46-24 at the half and never looked back. They doubled up the Corsairs three times in the final frame, first on a free throw by junior guard Stephanie Coro (N. Providence, RI/N. Providence) to make it 52-26, next on a layup by sophomore forward Courtney Burns (Rockland, MA/Rockland) pushing it to 61-30 and finally on a jumper by sophomore guard Ashley O'Dell (Lincoln, RI/Lincoln) swelling the lead to 80-40 with just over six minutes to play.
"We succumbed to their full court pressure which created too many turnovers for us," said Van Voorhis. "We played at their pace and never settled down and as a result didn't shoot well and we were never able to gain our composure."
The Corsairs shot just 30% from the field while the Anchorwomen made exactly half the shots they attempted as they went 35 of 70. RIC held a slight advantage on the boards at 42-40 but were able to force UMass Dartmouth into 23 turnovers.
The Corsairs were led by Houtman's team-high 13 points while Ashmeade recorded a double-double pulling down 15 boards to go with her 11 points. RIC had four players reach double figures. Junior forward Rachel Riley (Coventry, RI/Coventry) had a game-high 19 points, Coro scored 17 points, Burns finished with 16 points and O'Dell chipped in with 12 points.
The Corsairs fell to 5-13 and 2-6 in the Little East Conference with the win, snapping a two game winning streak, while the Anchorwomen improved to 13-5 and 4-4 in LEC play with the victory. UMass Dartmouth will return to action when they visit Salem State Thursday evening. RIC will host UMass Boston Saturday.
UMASS DARTMOUTH BASKETBALL