Herons win conference opener over Hamilton – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Herons win conference opener over Hamilton

GENEVA, N.Y.—The William Smith basketball team used a balanced scoring attack and a tenacious defense to open Liberty League play with a 50-42 victory over Hamilton tonight. The Herons improve to 7-5 overall, 1-0 in the conference, while the Continentals slip to 6-4, 0-1.

William Smith got 10-point efforts from senior guard Latasha Coney ,junior forward Erin Cunningham , and sophomore forward Ashlinn Barber . Coney also kicked in a team-high six rebounds and four steals. Sophomore guard Mollie Danahy finished the day with eight points, a game-high seven assists, and four steals.

The Heron defense was in midseason form, forcing Hamilton into 26 turnovers, holding them to just 31.1 percent shooting from the floor, while the Continentals’ 42 points are a season-low for a William Smith opponent. The Herons were whistled for just a single foul in the second half and only nine on the night as Hamilton managed just two trips to the free throw line.

The Continentals were led by senior center Sydney Fasulo’s  14 points, while senior guard Sarah Schrader grabbed a game-high nine rebounds before fouling out.

The Herons grabbed the night’s first lead when Cunningham converted William Smith’s first shot and held onto a slim advantage that fluctuated between one and six points for most of the first half. Hamilton junior guard Alex Sowinski hit a three-pointer with 4:13 remaining in the stanza to give the Continentals their first lead of the game, 17-15. It was a lead that was short lived.

William Smith scored the final 10 points of the first half to carry a 25-17 lead into the intermission. Coney capped the run with back-to-back baskets. The Herons carried that momentum into the second half, netting the first six points to build a 31-17 lead.

Barber hit a pair of free throws at the 13:06 mark to give William Smith it largest lead of the night, 36-21, but Hamilton refused to go down without a fight. The Continentals launched a 13-2 run that trimmed their deficit to just four with 5:54 remaining. However, the Herons prevented their guests from getting any closer and pulled away in the final two minutes.

William Smith is back in action on Jan. 16, when the Herons host Rensselaer. Tipoff in Bristol Gym is scheduled for 6 p.m.