No. 8 Tufts rolls over women's basketball

Nina Davenport scored a team-high 18 points in Bates' 67-28 loss to No. 8 Tufts on Jan. 20, 2018. (Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

LEWISTON, Maine -- No. 8 nationally ranked Tufts University outscored Bates College 55-18 after the first quarter, rolling to a 67-28 NESCAC victory Saturday afternoon in Alumni Gymnasium.

Tufts (16-2, 4-1 NESCAC) outrebounded Bates (7-12, 1-4) by a 57-27 margin, outscored Bates 38-6 in the paint and held the Bobcats to a season-low 19.0 percent shooting from the floor for the game, as well as their lowest point total in over a decade.

Jac Knapp led Tufts with 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting, including 2-4 from three-point territory. Melissa Baptista added 13 points and 11 rebounds off the bench. Erica DeCandido grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds to go with 11 rebounds and Katie Martensen contributed 10 points, six rebounds and three blocks. Lauren Dillon led the Jumbos with six assists and two steals.

Senior Nina Davenport (Freeport, Manie) scored 18 points for Bates on 7-of-24 shooting, including 3-13 from long distance. First-year Julia Middlebrook (Ridgefield, Conn.) added eight points. First-year Taylor McVeigh (Hanson, Mass.) grabbed a team-high six rebounds and scored two points, and the rest of the team was scoreless in the game.

Davenport scored all 10 of Bates' points in the first quarter as the Bobcats kept it close, finishing the period behind 12-10. The NESCAC's leading scorer at 18.3 points per game made 4-of-7 shots in the opening period, including 2-of-5 from three. Tufts missed all five of its 3-point attempts in the period and shot 5-15 from the floor.

A layup by McVeigh and a 3-pointer by Davenport made it 16-15 in Tufts' favor with 5:57 left in the second quarter, before the Jumbos finished the half with a 16-2 run, including a pair of threes by Dillon and seven points by DeCandido, opening up a 32-17 lead at the break.

The second half was all Tufts, as the Jumbos outscored the Bobcats 17-6 in the third quarter and 18-5 in the fourth. Knapp and Baptista scored six points apiece in the third quarter while Cailin Harrington added five off the bench, and Tufts led 49-23 after three periods.

Knapp added seven more points in the fourth quarter in four minutes of action, while six other Jumbos also scored in the period.

Both teams next play NESCAC games on Friday at 7pm: Bates will host Wesleyan while Tufts will host Connecticut College.