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Sharp-shooting Raiders storm season opener

Sharp-shooting Raiders storm season opener

CAMBRIDGE, MA -- Rivier shot over 54 percent from three-point range in opening up sizable first half lead as the Raiders coasted to an 80-34 victory over the Lynx in both teams' season opener Wednesday night at the Nicholas Athletics Center.

The visitors hit on 6-11 treys in the first half, and 44 percent for the game, shooting 46.6 percent from the floor and limiting the Lynx to 22.4 percent shooting on the night.

Amanda and Deanna Purcell (Hudson, NH/Alvirne) carried the Raiders, doing the brunt of their work in the first half, when the former scored 11 points on 4-6 shooting and younger sister Deanna scored 10 on 2-4 shooting from distance in her college debut. Amanda tied for game-high honors with 14 points, Deanna Purcell and Ryan Baker (Whitinsville, MA/Northbridge) followed with 12 each, and Shannon Marcoux (Falmouth, MA/Falmouth) hit 2-2 from three-point range, both in the first half, for 10 points as the Raiders won big.

Lesley's Samantha Olivieri (Rangley, ME/Rangley Lakes) tied for game-high honors with a career-high 14 points. The junior came off the Lynx bench to hit shoot 4-4 from the field in the first half, leading all players with six field goals on the night on only seven attempts. She shot 2-2 from downtown, pulling down three rebounds as the Lynx only scorer in double figures.

Back-to-back Amanda Purcell three-point plays opened up a 22-6 Raiders lead midway through the first half. A pair of Chelsea Contre (Pomfret, CT/Woodstock) layups cut the lead to 24-12, but four different Raiders combined to shoot 4-5 from three-point range over the next 5:33. Olivieri entered with seven straight Lynx points, including a three-pointer that snapped a 20-7 run, but Rivier went into halftime leading 49-22.

Olivieri opened up the second half as hot as she ended the first, knocking down a corner trey and beating the shot clock buzzer on a fadeaway in the paint in the first two minutes.

Unfortunately for Leah Lipschitz's Lynx, the Raiders didn't cool off any, either. After Olivieri's second jumper of the half, Rivier tore off a 23-4 run featuring nine points from Baker as the Raiders extended their lead to 76-31 and cruised to the 80-34 final.

In her first game as a Lynx, Contre totaled seven points, nine rebounds, a block and a steal. Sophomore point guard Emily Fleming (Medford, MA/Matignon) added eight points, five boards and a game-high six assists but was pressured into seven turnovers before fouling out midway through the second half.

Lesley ventures to Chestnut Hill on Saturday for the Pine Manor Tip-off Tournament, taking on Albertus Magnus College in the first round on Saturday. Rivier takes on Western Connecticut State Friday night, also in non-conference action.