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Cold Shooting Sends Dartmouth to Loss in Blue Sky Consolation

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Milica Toskovic led Dartmouth with nine points and seven rebounds in a loss to Villanova...     By Doug Austin

HANOVER, N.H.- Laura Sweeny scored a game-high 22 points and Villanova held the Dartmouth women's basketball team to 28.9 percent shooting (13-of-45) as the Wildcats defeated Dartmouth, 60-37, in the consolation game of the 2012 Blue Sky Classic.

Dartmouth (1-11) was led by sophomore guard Milica Toskovic (Santa Barbara, Calif.) who had a team-best nine points and added seven rebounds. Freshman forward Lakin Roland (Jeffersonville, Ind.) added a career-high nine rebounds.

For the third consecutive game, Dartmouth had a hard time getting any consistent offense as they spotted the Wildcats (10-2) an early 11-0 lead, which forced the Big Green to burn an early timeout. Senior co-captain Faziah Steen (Detroit, Mich.) ended the run with a jumper from the right side, which breathed some life into the home team.

Sophomore forward Abbey Schmitt (Winnetka, Ill.) followed suit with a basket of her own underneath, but the Wildcats used a strong transition game to run their lead up to 15-4 behind back-to-back layups.

With the Wildcats leading 21-9, the Big Green began to chip away at the score. With baskets from freshman forward Lauren Taiclet (Wellesley, Mass.) and Schmitt the once, 16-point lead, was down to 10 points, 21-11, at the 7:21 mark.

A triple from freshman guard Kaitana Martinez (Hailey, Idaho) cut the Wildcat lead into single digits for the first time since the opening minutes of the game, but a 5-0 burst -- highlighted by the fourth triple from Villanova -- kept the lead with the visitors heading into halftime.

The Big Green struggled with turnovers in the contest, posting 23 turnovers, which lead to 26 Villanova points on the other end. The Wildcats also capitalized on the inside with 32 points in the paint, to just 16 for the Big Green. 

Martinez, who started the second half, sparked a bit of a run to open the second half. After getting fouled while shooting a triple, she nailed two of her three free throws, while Toskovic nailed a pair as well to keep the score within reach. 

Neither team seemed to have much luck shooting in the second half, with both teams going a combined four minutes without a bucket. The Wildcats were able to snap out of it and with a 10-3 run pulled ahead, 42-26, at the 12:38 mark en route to the victory.

Dartmouth is next in action on Thursday (Jan. 3) when they welcome Holy Cross for the final game of its three-game homestand. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.

Blue Sky Classic All-Tournament Team

Elena Delle Donne, Delaware

All Tournament Team
Nicola Zimmer, Dartmouth
Laura Sweeney, Villanova
Danielle Parker,  Delaware
Wumi Agunbiade, Duquesne
Jocelyn Floyd, Duquesne

Big Green Sidelines
Villanova is Dartmouth's third opponent out of the Big East this season, the first time in program history the Big Green have played three teams from the Big East in one season ... This is just the second-ever meeting between Dartmouth and Villanova. The first was ironically in a tournament hosted by Villanova during the 1980-81 season ... Dartmouth hasn't won a game in the Blue Sky Classic since the 2008 season when they defeated Wagner in the consolation game ... Dartmouth has been held to less than 40 points on three occasions this season, including each of the last two games.