Courtesy of UofRathletics.com
In pre-season, Rochester women’s basketball coach Jim Scheible was counting on a strong work ethic and defensive intensity as keys for the Yellowjackets to succeed this year. He got both on Tuesday night. Rochester opened the 2019-20 season with a 66-33 victory over Elmira College in the Louis Alexander Palestra.
UR held a small margin on the glass – 49-43 – but it was 35-11 off Elmira’s backboard. The Yellowjackets gave up 11 second chance points. They scored 17 points off 21 EC turnovers and they blocked 10 shots – three by Julianna Okoniewski, two by Shannon Loiseau and Moriah Kunes, one each from Lauren Foley, Ally Forness, and Calley McCulley.
The shooting was a little edgy at both ends of the floor. Rochester finished at 35.9% (23-64). The Yellowjackets made six outside the arc – three by Foley, two by Alexis Sestric, and one from Tessa Ludwick.
Sestric scored 11 points to lead Rochester. Okoniewski had 10 and six rebounds. Foley had nine points in 15 minutes, all from three-point range. Kelsey Stites had seven and Hannah Lindemuth scored six.
Alyssa Waters was the only Elmira player in double figures. She finished with 10 points. Bridget Yaw scored seven points. Taylor Johnson took game rebounding honors with eight. The Soaring Eagles struggled from the floor in the first half. They shot 22.4% for the game.
Rochester used an 11-0 run in the first quarter to take a 13-8 lead. Sestric made a pair of free throws, then sank a long three-pointer from right wing. The Yellowjackets closed the second quarter with a 9-0 run, five of the points from the line and two baskets – a layup by Okoniewski to start it and an eight-footer off the left baseline by Lindemuth. It was 32-14 heading into the locker room. Foley and Ludwick hit three-pointers as part of an 8-0 run in the first four minutes of the third quarter.
Rochester will host its annual Chuck Resler Invitational this Friday and Saturday. The opening game features Baldwin Wallace College against Skidmore College at 1 pm Friday. Rochester plays Houghton College at 6 pm.