JOHNSON, Vt. – Junior Peyton Young (Douglas, Mass.) and senior Amanda Ortiz (Newton, Mass.) combined to score 45 points Saturday afternoon as Lasell University improved to 3-0 on the season with a 70-54 victory over Northern Vermont University-Johnson at Carter Gymnasium.
Lasell is off to the best start of a season since the 1999-2000 Lasers won their first three games, while the Badgers drop to 0-4.
Young scored a career-high 23 points on 7-of-11 shooting for the Lasers while Ortiz tallied 22 points and eight rebounds. Junior Devyn Markland (Derby, Conn.) made a solid contribution with eight points and a career-high 11 rebounds, and senior D'Asia Allen (Providence, R.I.) chipped in with eight points off the bench.
Sophomore Klaire Ware (Fairfax, Vt.) led the hosts with 11 points, senior Lindsey LaPerle (Bethel, Vt.) notched 10 points and sophomore Amorette Rodriguez (Downey, Calif.) was good for five points and a team-high nine rebounds.
The Lasers jumped out to an 11-2 lead midway through the first quarter as Ortiz and Allen both hit three-pointers early on. Johnson battled back and Lasell led 17-10 after one.
The teams traded baskets before Lasell opened up its first double-digit lead (23-13) after a bucket by junior Precious Montgomery (Bridgeport, Conn.) early in the second quarter. The Lasers maintained the advantage and led at halftime, 34-24.
The Badgers pulled to with seven points (38-31) after Ware's jumper early in the third frame and climbed to with six (24-36) after a three-pointer by Ware midway through the quarter. Lasell got the lead back up to 10 points but the home team wouldn't quit, and a three-pointer by freshman Madelyn House (Point Pleasant Beach, N.J.) cut the margin to 51-46 after three quarters.
NVU-Johnson scored the first basket of the final frame to get to within three, but baskets by Markland and Young helped Lasell push the lead back to eight (56-48). The Lasers held the Badgers scoreless for more than three minutes and allowed just two points in a seven-minute stretch to open an insurmountable 15-point lead (65-50) with just over two minutes to play.
The Lasers will be back on the court next weekend at the GNAC-NAC Challenge at Rivier University as Great Northeast Athletic Conference schools Rivier and Lasell take turns playing North Atlantic Conference schools UMaine Presque Isle and UMaine Farmington. Lasell will face UMPI Friday, November 22, at 6 p.m. and meet UMF on Saturday at noon.
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