WORCESTER, Mass. - The Worcester State University women's basketball team clinched at least a share of the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference regular season title on Wednesday night as the Lancers bested Bridgewater State 79-54 at John P. Brissette Court.
With the win, Worcester State moves to 19-5 overall on the season and 10-1 in MASCAC play. Bridgewater moves to 12-12 overall and 7-4 in the MASCAC.
Before the game, the Worcester State University Athletic Department honored its seniors, Kaitlyn Berkel (Waterford, Conn.), Emily Carens (Northborough, Mass.), Brittany Herring (West Brookfield, Mass.), Kate Surprenant (Pelham, N.H.), and student assistant coach Aaron Maday (Worcester, Mass.), in their final regular season home game at John P. Brissette Court. Each senior was joined on the court by their friends and family members.
The Lancers came out of the gate strong in the opening quarter, knocking down 52.6 percent of their shots from the floor (10-of-19) to hold a 20-12 lead at the end of one quarter. Berkel led the Lancers offensively with six points in the quarter, while Bridgewater State senior Sara DaSilva (Chelmsford, Mass.) led the way with seven points.
The second quarter saw the Bears close the gap slightly, but it was still Worcester State holding a 34-29 lead heading to the half. Herring went to the locker room as the game's leading scorer with 10 points.
The third quarter was all Lancers from start to finish. After a lay-in from Kayla Carter (Beverly, Mass.) cut the Lancer lead to 36-33 just over a minute into the quarter, Worcester State went on a 19-3 run over the next seven minutes of action to go ahead 55-36. Surprenant scored 13 of her game-high 22 points in the quarter.
Ahead 62-42 through three, the Lancers put it in cruise control to close out the victory. With an assist on a bucket by Colleen Cutting (Auburn, Mass.) early in the fourth quarter, Worcester State junior Catherine Sweeney (Lowell, Mass.) completed her second triple-double of the season. She is only the second player in the NCAA's Division III to record multiple triple-doubles on the season, joining New Jersey City's Marajiah Bacon. Sweeney finished the night with 12 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists, as well as adding five blocks. Seven different Lancers found the scoreboard in the fourth as Worcester State finished off the win.
Surprenant's game-high 22 points was followed closely by Herring, who finished the contest with 18 points. Berkel scored eight points and grabbed five boards on her Senior Night, while Carens finished with six points and four rebounds.
Senior guard Olivia DelGrosso (Ledyard, Conn.) was the leading scorer for Bridgewater State on the evening, recording 15 points in the defeat. DaSilva finished with 14, while senior Kailyn Aguiar (Acushnet, Mass.) finished with 13.
Next up for Worcester State, they'll close out the regular season on Saturday with a road trip to Westfield State. Tip-off is slated for 2 p.m.