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Sophomore guard Colleen Hart is named Tournament MVP

Eastern Tip-Off Tournament
Tufts 68, Eastern Connecticut 55

At Willimantic, CT
Sunday, November 23, 2008

Game Statistics

Eastern Tip-Off Tournament Champions

WILLIMANTIC, Conn. -- Three players combined to score 17 points off the bench in the second half as the Tufts University women's basketball team overcame foul trouble to three starters and gained a 68-55 victory over host Eastern Connecticut State University in the championship game of the 29th Annual Eastern Tip-Off Tournament at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium.

With three starters saddled with foul trouble throughout, Tufts (2-0) got seven points off the bench from junior guard Vanessa Miller (Ciincinnati, OH) and sophomore guard Lindsay Weiner (Rockville, MD) and a three-point field goal from senior guard Stacy Filocco (Olney, MD) to foil Eastern's (1-1) attempt to win its third straight tip-off title and tenth in 12 years.

Both tourney finalists qualified for NCAA tournament play a year ago, with Tufts advancing to the Elite Eight before being eliminated by national finalist Messiah College. The meeting between Eastern and Tufts was the first between the programs.

Tufts never trailed after the opening bucket of the second half and used a decisive 8-2 run to push its lead to ten midway through the second half. Weiner sank her only three-point field goal attempt to give the Jumbos a seven-point lead, and Filocco converted her only three-point attempt of the game a minute later to give Tufts a ten-point, 57-47 lead with 9:30 left. Miller, Weiner and Filocco were a combined 7 for 10 from the floor in 24 minutes in the second half. Each had a three-pointer, the team's only threes of the second half.

For Tufts, starting senior center Katie Tausanovitch (Lyme, NH) was charged with her third foul with Eastern leading, 31-25, with three minutes left in the first half, and picked up her fourth foul before the second half was three minutes old. Starting junior forward Julia Baily (Farmington, CT) was whistled for her third foul with 30 seconds left in the first half and was given her fourth eight minutes into the second half. Starting senior forward Kim Moynihan (West Hartford, CT) also finished with four fouls, but her final two fouls came over the final seven minutes, when the Jumbos had the game in hand.

Eastern shot over 50 percent in the first half and led by eight three minutes before half before Tufts sliced the lead to three by halftime. While the Warriors were missing two of their final three shots of the half and turning the ball over twice, Tufts got a three-point field goal from tournament MVP Colleen Hart (Needham, MA) and an inside basket from Moynihan to get itself back in the game.

Moynihan led Tufts with 16 points, followed by Bailey's 15 and 13 from Hart. Bailey added seven rebounds and two blocks. The Jumbos were a spiffy 7 for 15 from three-point territory (46.7 percent).

Eastern, on the other hand, finished 1 for 9 on threes. They were led by a game-high 20 points and 10 rebounds from Ashley McFetridge.