14th-ranked women's basketball upsets Bowdoin
Colby’s Jil Vaughan ’12 goes up for an easy layup during Colby’s upset of Bowdoin College.
Riding a wave of positive momentum, the Colby women’s basketball team pulled off an upset this past Saturday against Bowdoin College. The 14th-ranked Mules led for the entire game as they toppled previously 10th-ranked Bowdoin at home, 56-41. Though the game did not count in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) standings, the rivalry games always provide tough competition and serve as a barometer for where the team stands for the upcoming season. Head coach Julie Veilleux, who was an assistant coach at Bowdoin from 2005-2008, runs her record to 5-0 in her first year on the sidelines for Colby.
The star of the show for the Mules was senior forward Jil Vaughan. Vaughan had her best game since the season opener, a 79-57 victory over Brandeis University, in which she put up 16 in both the rebounds and points columns. Against Bowdoin on Saturday, Vaughan tallied 17 points and 10 rebounds, recording her second double-double of the season.
Also making a strong individual contribution was senior guard and captain Aarika Ritchie, who went 3-9 from the field and was perfect on four free throws to total 12 points. Guard Diana Manduca ’13 led the Mules in assists with seven to add to her eight total points. Bowdoin’s junior guard Kaitlin Donohoe led the Polar Bears with 12 points.
The six-foot-three Vaughan played a strong inside game that led to a 38-33 advantage in team rebounding for the Mules. Vaughan also went 8-11 on inside shots to further establish Colby’s physical presence. In addition to besting Bowdoin on the scoreboard and the rebound column, the Mules topped the Polar Bears in essentially every important statistical category. Neither team performed particularly well behind the three-point line, but Colby shot a passable 23 percent (5-22) compared to Bowdoin’s 10-percent (1-10) mark. Overall, the Mules shot quite well, converting 40.4 percent of attempts from the field. Bowdoin made 29.1 percent of its shots. Colby also outperformed Bowdoin in assists (15-7), turnovers (14-15) and second-chance points (10-2).
The win over a top-10 team establishes Colby as a major player both in NESCAC play and on a national stage. Bowdoin’s loss will force the team to regroup and adjust; the Polar Bears also lost to the University of Southern Maine earlier in the week, and the two losses knocked them out of the national rankings, according to d3hoops.com.