Yale Rally Falls Short Against FDU

Roberts' 18 Points Powers Friars To Victory

NEW HAVEN, CONN. — Trailing by 15 points with 9:16 left in the game, the Yale University women's basketball team seized control of the game and put together a rally that nearly resulted in their second win of the season. Unfortunately for the Bulldogs, the rally needed a few more seconds to pull off the feat, but the game-ending buzzer put an end to the improbable comeback.

Jasmyra Saunders scored 16 points on 7-of-10 shooting to help Fairleigh Dickinson hold on for the 59-57 victory over Yale at John J. Lee Amphitheater Monday night.

Esther Wallace's jumper with 9:16 remaining gave Fairleigh Dickinson a 54-39 lead, but it was a lead that the Knights (4-4) nearly let slip through their fingers.

Yale (1-6) outscored FDU 18-5 the rest of the way and had a chance to tie the score with the game's final play. Janna Graf hit a short jumper as the horn sounded, but the referees ruled that her shot came after the buzzer, leaving the Bulldogs with their sixth straight defeat.

"They just wanted it more than we did," said Chris Gobrecht, the Joel E. Smilow, Class of 1954, Head Coach of Women's Basketball. "They saw that we were missing three players and they smelled blood. We were missing our leading scorer, our senior captain, and a bench player that plays a lot of minutes for us. We had a difficult time digging ourselves out of the hole that we created for ourselves without those players in the lineup."

Yale was without starting guards Yoyo Greenfield and Megan Vasquez, as well as sophomore reserve forward Ericka von Kaeppler. All three missed the game with symptoms resulting from mild concussions suffered last week.

Because of their absence, Graf, a freshman forward, earned the first start of her college career. She scored 10 points in 34 minutes of action. Freshman forward Alexandra Osborn-Jones came off the bench to play in the first game of her college career. She scored seven points behind a 5-for-6 shooting effort from the free-throw line.

"I think OJ and Janna gave us a lot to feel excited about," Coach Gobrecht said. "You can see that those kids are really going to help us. Once we are whole again, those kids are going to make us feel a lot better about things."

Senior forward Mady Gobrecht recorded her first double-double of the season to lead the Bulldogs. She finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds, along with six assists.

Reserves Mariyah Laury and Alannah Driscoll-Sbar added 13 and 11 points respectively for Fairleigh Dickinson.

Fairleigh Dickinson's reserves made the difference, outscoring Yale's reserves 43-18.

Yale opened up an early eight-point lead behind the long-distance shooting efforts of Allie Messimer, Graf, and Verena Lehner, who each hit an early 3-pointer to help the Bulldogs jump out to a 17-9 lead. But the Knights turned up the intensity and outscored the Bulldogs 24-8  over the final 10:27 of the first half.

Yale came out of the halftime break and scored four quick points on a jumper by Graf and a pair of free throws by Gobrecht to cut the deficit to 33-29. However, the FDU defense held Yale to only one field goal, a layup by Graf with 11:38 left, over a 9:11 stretch that hampered the Bulldogs' ability to chip away at the deficit until Gobrecht ended the drought with a layup with 5:06 left, trimming the deficit to 58-50.

Yale is back home on Wednesday, when it will play host to in-state rival Sacred Heart at 7 p.m.

Report filed by Jon Erickson Jr., Yale Sports Publicity

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