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Colby edges women's basketball 62-57 in home opener

Allie Coppola led Bates women's basketball with 15 points and 10 rebounds in a 62-57 loss to Colby on Nov. 29, 2015. (File photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

LEWISTON, Maine -- Desiree Smith scored 26 points on 10-of-13 shooting from the field to lead Colby College to a 62-57 non-conference victory over the Bates College women's basketball team on Sunday afternoon, in the Bobcats' home opener in Alumni Gymnasium.

The Mules rose to 4-0 with the win and dropped Bates to 0-4. The NESCAC rivals will meet again on Jan. 8 in Waterville for their league matchup.

Colby led by three points (43-40) after three quarters and tried to pull away, going up 51-42 with a layup by Smith, two more by Carylanne Wolfington and another by Mia Diplock. Bates came back within four (51-47) with a layup by junior Allie Coppola (Tarrytown, N.Y.) and a three-point play by junior Bernadette Connors (Windham, N.H.).

Wolfington assisted Haley Driscoll for a hoop down low to give Colby a 59-50 edge with 2:06 left in the game, but Bates came back again, as Coppola knocked down a jumper and sophomore Nina Davenport (Freeport, Maine) knocked down two free throws to cut it to 59-54 with 1:13 to go. Davenport answered a pair of free throws by Diplock by draining a three on a Connors assist with 45 seconds left, and then she stole the ball from Wolfington with 39 seconds to go, but the Bobcats turned the ball over and had to foul Smith, who made one of two foul shots to make it 62-57 with 19 seconds to go.

Colby mounted an 18-11 lead after one quarter, but Bates came back in the second quarter to tie the game at the half. The Bobcats turned the ball over 11 times in the half but outrebounded the Mules 19-13 and made four 3-pointers to Colby's two.

Wolfington had 13 points, six rebounds and three assists for the Mules, while Diplock added 11 points, three assists and four steals. Driscoll scored eight points and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds.

Coppola led Bates with 15 points on 5-for-7 shooting from the field and 10 rebounds, her first double-double of the season. Connors played the full 40 minutes and scored 14 points with five rebounds and three assists, and Davenport posted 13 points and seven rebounds.

Colby will next play at the University of Maine in Orono on Tuesday at 7pm; Bates next travels to Williams College for the two-day Williams Classic, where the Bobcats will face Clarkson University on Dec. 4 at 8pm.