NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The 2016-17 women's basketball season is underway, and Yale was given a fierce test to start things off. The Binghamton Bearcats led 14-6 late in the first quarter, and it wasn't until the third quarter that Yale took the lead back. The early nerves faded as the Bulldogs settled in, and they eventually took control of the game and held on for a nine-point victory. After a three-game winning streak to end last season, the Bulldogs have picked up where they left off.
Seniors Lena Munzer and Tamara Simpson led the way for the Bulldogs with 12 points apiece. After the game, Munzer said, "We knew we were better than what we put out on the floor in the first half. Maybe a little bit was jitters or whatever, so we got all that out of the way."
Joel E. Smilow '54 head coach Allison Guth agreed, "there's no doubt that there's some jitters that first game." While this is true for any player at the start of a season, she aimed her comment especially at the freshmen who were making their collegiate debuts. Five freshmen joined the Bulldogs this season, and four of them played against Binghamton.
While jitters partially explained Yale's slow start, Guth also gave credit to Binghamton, and she noted an important midgame adjustment. "[Binghamton] had seven offensive boards at half and that's something we were not happy about." The Bulldogs fought harder for the ball in the second half, and they did not allow Binghamton to get a single offensive rebound after halftime.
While Guth said the freshmen "need to get settled from an offensive perspective," she complimented them on their defense and rebounding. Megan Gorman made a particularly big impact on the boards, tying for a team high with seven rebounds.
The team did not have its strongest offensive showing in general, scoring 57 points compared to its average of 64.2 points per game last season. But it was an encouraging effort for the team to still win fairly convincingly without firing on all cylinders.
The Bulldogs have a quick turnaround before their next game, which will be played at Manhattan on Tuesday night at 7 p.m.
Tomorrow the emphasis will be on recovery, but for now, Guth says, "Happy for these guys. Celebrating the win."
Filed by Andy Dougherty, Yale Sports Publicity