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Herons remain in tournament hunt with 73-63 win over Clarkson

The William Smith College basketball team began its regular season ending four-game home stand with a 73-63 Liberty League win over Clarkson University Monday evening. The Herons were led by Lauren DeVaney and Olivia Parisi’s double-doubles.

DeVaney scored 21 points and matched her career-high with a game-high 18 rebounds. It was her team-leading eight double-double of the season. She also had three assists, three steals and no turnovers. Parisi finished with 20 points and 11 boards for her seventh double-double. Brooke Jarvis shared game-high honors, matching DeVaney’s 21 points.

The Golden Knights also had three players in double figures led by Cassidy Dumont’s 19 points off the bench. Mariah Benavides and Lauryn Withrow chipped in 11 points and 10 points, respectively.

William Smith dominated the first quarter, outscoring Clarkson 24-9, including a 16-4 opening run. The Herons never trailed in the first half, leading by as many as 17 midway through the second quarter. Clarkson ended the half on an 8-4 run to go into the break trailing 35-22.

DeVaney completed her double-double before halftime, heading into the break with game-highs of 11 points and 10 rebounds. The Herons shot 53.3 in the first 10 minutes and 36.4% for the opening half. The Golden Knights shot just 21.6% in the first half.

William Smith maintained a double digit lead throughout the third quarter, carrying a 56-41 lead into the final 10 minutes.

Clarkson scored the first six points of the fourth quarter to get within nine, 56-47. DeVaney answered with a jumper at the other end of the floor, then grabbed a defensive board that led to a layup by Maddie Patrick for a 60-47 lead with about seven and a half minutes remaining. That sequence kicked off a 12-2 run that built William Smith’s largest lead of the game, 68-49.

The Golden Knights (5-17, 4-12) made their last push with 10 straight points, cutting the Heron advantage to nine, 68-59, with about a minute and a half to play. From there, William Smith closed out the victory at the free throw line, making 5-of-6 down the stretch.

DiSanto Propane (Billboard)

The Herons (6-16, 5-10) finished the game 21-of-23 at the line (.913). It was their highest percentage at the charity stripe this season and their second most free throws made in a game. William Smith hasn’t had a higher free throw percentage in a game since Jan. 11, 2014 (15-16 at Skidmore).

The Herons will be back in Bristol Gym at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 15, when they host Bard (1-19, 0-15).