Fresh off a first-round bye the Framingham State Rams took on Bridgewater State in the MASCAC semi-finals on Feb. 22.
The game was tight in the beginning, with the Rams up 19-10 after the first quarter, mainly due to Tiphani Harris’ eight points and seven rebounds, and Mary Kate O’Day’s six points.
The game got closer by halftime as Bridgewater outscored Framingham 20-15 in the second quarter, making the score 34-30 Rams. Bridgewater shot 53.3 percent from the field, while Framingham shot 37.5 percent.
Framingham stretched their lead in the third, outscoring Bridgewater 22-14, making the score 56-44 Rams. Raegan Mulherin led the way with seven points and five rebounds, while Emily Velozo came off the bench to score six points in five minutes.
The Rams secured their trip to the MASCAC Championship with a 15-6 scoring advantage in the final quarter, making the final score 71-50 Framingham. Julia Sanborn scored eight points in eight minutes to help seal the win.
Mulherin led all scorers with 19 points in the game and came away with 10 rebounds. Harris scored 14 points and crashed the boards for a game-high 16 rebounds. Sanborn followed with 14 points of her own with eight rebounds. O’Day also scored 14 points, while pulling down six rebounds and dishing out four assists. Velozo provided support off the bench with 10 points of her own. Lauren Donahue provided a game-high six assists in the victory.
Framingham State took on Westfield State for the MASCAC Championship on Feb. 24.
Westfield started out strong, ending the first quarter on top 26-19. Velozo and Mulherin both led the way for Framingham with five points each.
Framingham was outscored again in the second quarter 21-20. O’Day was able to put up nine points in nine minutes, and Velozo scored seven.
After halftime, Westfield State stretched their lead to 70-52 with a 23-13 third quarter. O’Day led the way again for the Rams with seven points in the period.
In the fourth quarter, Framingham outscored Westfield 23-20, but it was too little too late. Mulherin led the way with 12 points in 10 minutes. The final quarter performance was not nearly enough, as Framingham lost in the championship 90-75.
O’Day led all scorers in the game with 20 points, Velozo dumped in 19 to go along with seven rebounds. Mulherin collected 19 points of her own and crashed the boards for nine rebounds. Harris grabbed a team high 10 rebounds in the game.
The story of the game was the benches. Westfield State’s bench outscored Framingham’s 54-1.
Despite coming up just short of a championship, the Rams have much to celebrate from this season. Sophomore O’Day earned MASCAC Player of the Year as she led the conference in points per game with 18.5. She also had the fourth-best 3-point field goal percentage as she shot 34.6 percent from deep. Head Coach Walter Paschal earned the Champion’s Choice Coach of the Year Award. Harris and Mulherin both were named to the All-MASCAC teams as well. Mulherin earned a spot on the First Team All-Conference after finishing the year scoring 16.1 points per game. Harris earned a spot on the Second Team All-Conference as she averaged a double-double, scoring 10.9 points and grabbing 10.2 rebounds per game.
Framingham finished the season with a final record of 16-10.