Posted: November 15, 2009
NASHVILLE – The Lehigh women’s basketball team suffered its first loss of the 2009-10 season Sunday afternoon 90-54 to the No. 20/22 Vanderbilt Commodores in Memorial Gymnasium. The Mountain Hawks were able to cut the Vanderbilt lead to nine in the second half, but the Commodores were able to regroup and finish the game strong. With the loss Lehigh falls to 1-1 on the season. “Vanderbilt is a very good team, a very skilled team and we knew we’d have our hands full, but I was disappointed with our effort in the early going,” head coach Sue Troyan said.
The Mountain Hawks jumped out to an early 6-4 lead over Vanderbilt in the first half, but the Commodores came storming back to take an 18-10 lead. Lehigh went into the post early as its first eight points came from three different forwards: sophomore Alexa Williams (2), sophomore Emily Gratch (4) and junior Courtney Dentler (2).
Vanderbilt would go on to build a 35-20 lead and the closest the Mountain Hawks would come the rest of the half was 13 points. The Commodores went into the half with a 47-29 lead.
Gratch and senior Alex Ross led Lehigh with eight points apiece in the first half.
Lehigh started the second half off strong with a 9-0 run to cut the Vanderbilt lead to 47-38. The Mountain Hawks got in foul trouble midway through the half and the Commodores were able to go on a 43-16 run to finish the game.
Gratch finished as Lehigh’s leading scorer with 14 points in only 24 minutes of action because of foul trouble. Junior Courtney Dentler came off the bench and added nine points and four rebounds.
Vanderbilt had three players score in double figures as freshman Tiffany Clarke led the way with 14 points.
The Commodores out-rebounded Lehigh 41 to 28 in the game and shot 55.6 percent from the floor. The Mountain Hawks shot 36.4 percent for the game and 21.7 percent from beyond the arc.
Despite the loss the Brown and White will head home with some positives. “The good news is that there’s a lot we can learn, a lot we can take away from this. We saw the effort and determination from an upper echelon team, and now we know what we need to do if we want to compete in a game like this,” Troyan said.
The Mountain Hawks return to Bethlehem for their home opener on Wednesday November 18, at 5 p.m. against Fairleigh Dickinson. Fans can view the game live on Lehighsports.com with Jeff Tourial calling the action.
Photos by Jim Ross
Mountain Hawks Basketball Post-Game Extra