Junior guard Jaimie Rubin scored a career-high 18 points and sophomore guard Jacqueline Murphy pulled down a career-high 19 rebounds in the William Smith basketball team’s 2011 finale, but the Rivier Raiders slipped past the Herons 66-64 in the Posada Royale Holiday Classic.
Rubin shot 8-of-15 from the floor, including 2-of-5 from 3-point range. She also handed out a game-high six assists. Murphy turned in her third double-double of the season, scoring 10 points while corralling seven offensive boards and 12 on the offensive glass. Sophomore guard Sasha Borenstein added 12 points, making 4-of-10 from behind the 3-point arc.
Rivier (7-4) got a game-high 23 points from Deanna Purcell, who was 7-of-16 from the floor and 9-of-11 from the line. She also blocked three shots. Amanda Purcell was the only other Raider to hit double digits with a 16-point game.
The game was close from start to finish with neither team leading by more than eight points. The lead changed hands 15 times with Rivier scoring the final four points of the game to take the lead when it matters most.
Junior guard Sydni Salvatore toed the free throw line with the Herons protecting a 1-point lead with under a minute to play. She sank the front end to extend the lead to 64-62. After she missed the second, William Smith was whistled for a foul.
At the other end of the floor Deanna Purcell stepped to the line and drained both freebies to tie the game. The Herons missed a layup with 31 seconds left and the Raiders grabbed the carom. Amanda Purcell hit a jumper with just under nine seconds remaining to give her team the lead.
William Smith (4-5) was able to get off a 3-pointer at the buzzer, but it hit the front of the iron.
The Herons committed 23 turnovers to Riviers’ 19, and the Raiders took advantage of the miscues, scoring 25 points off turnovers to just 13 for William Smith. The Herons also got into foul trouble, sending Rivier to the line 28 times compared to their 14 trips. The Raiders also made twice as many free throws (18-9).
William Smith will be back in action on Tuesday, Jan. 10, when the Herons host Union in their Liberty League opener. Tipoff in Bristol Gym is scheduled for 6 p.m.