BOSTON – The Suffolk women's basketball team opened 2016 on a high note, as the Rams took down Worcester State, 78-61, Monday night inside Regan Gymnasium.
The victory pushes Suffolk to 7-4 overall and 5-2 on the Larry E. Smith & Michael S. Smith Court, while Worcester State dips to 3-8 overall.
Nine different Rams put the ball in the basket with five scoring double figures. Alessandra Quadri lead on both ends of the floor for the second straight game as the senior guard poured in 16 points and 14 rebounds. Georgia Bourikas matched Quadri's points with 16 and contributed seven boards, six assists and two steals. Alexandra Nagri put in 14 points, followed closely by Kelsey Schiebel's 13 on a 5-of-8 performance from the floor and a perfect 3-of-3 from long range. Marissa Gudauskas rounded out all scorers in double figures with 10 points, shooting 50 percent (4-8) on the day.
Worcester State was led double-double efforts from Britt Herring (14 points, 10 rebounds) and Kaitlyn Berkel (13 points, 12 rebounds).
The Rams fell in a 5-0 early in the first frame before Suffolk's back court began picking up the pieces. Nagri got things going with a lay-up followed by a deep hoop from Schiebel. Nagri matched her counter parts with a triple of own to put the hosts ahead, 8-5, and force Karen Tessmer to call her team over to chat.
Out of the timeout, Worcester went up 9-8, but the edge was short lived as Schiebel and Nagri made back-to-back buckets to put Suffolk out in front, 13-9. Quadri, Bourikas and Megan Conner each got in on the scoring as the Rams held a 26-15 advantage after the first 10 quarter.
Over the first 10 minutes, Suffolk shot an impressive 66.7 percent (10-15) from the floor and went 4-of-5 from deep. Nagri led all scorers with nine points, while Schiebel put in eight. On the other end of the hardwood, Berkel was the difference for Worcester on the boards as the forward grabbed five of the team's six.
The Lancers made things interesting in the first half of the second stanza, pulling within nine, 29-20. A trey from Guduskas sparked Suffolk to score 12 of the final 19 points capped off by a transition three-point play for Nagri off the sophomore's steal at half-court.
Suffolk continued its high shooting through 20 minutes as the Rams went 57.1 percent (16-28) from the field and 55.6 percent (5-9) from 3-point range. Worcester, meanwhile, shot 39.3 (11-28) from the floor, but only went 1-of-4 from beyond-the arc. Nagri's 12 points lead the Rams with Schiebel and Quadri each adding eight apiece in the first half. Sammi Toli paced the visitors with seven points.
The Rams did not skip a beat out of the intermission and pilled on the points in the third period to take a hefty 62-45 advantage into the final frame.
Worcester put on the pressure in the fourth, scoring six quick points in the opening minute to have Ed Leyden call for a timeout. The Lancers cut the deficit to nine, 64-53, but the Rams put on full-court pressure and held its composure to hold onto the lead and win, 78-61.
The Rams return to action Thursday, Jan. 7 when Suffolk welcomes Pine Manor to Regan Gymnasium for a 6 p.m. game.