Early returns favor W&J, WPI

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Meghan Dryburgh put up big numbers in Washington and Jefferson’s season-opening 14-point win at No. 19 Marietta.
Washington and Jefferson athletics file photo

The early returns from Election Night were very good for the Washington and Jefferson women and the UW-La Crosse men, both of whom opened the new season with wins over ranked foes.

Elsewhere, the ninth-ranked WPI men won a late-night nailbiter, and Cortaca Jug week began with Cortland and Ithaca splitting their two games.

Washington and Jefferson got a big night from its starting backcourt and played stifling defense in a 67-53 win over No. 19 Marietta. Sophomore guards Meghan Dryburgh, Adalynn Cherry, and Bryn Bezjak combined for 55 points, 27 rebounds and 11 assists, and the Presidents held Marietta to four points in the fourth quarter and 29 percent shooting overall. Full recap

Dryburgh led W&J with 18 points, 13 rebounds, five blocks and four assists. Washington and Jefferson was selected first in the preseason PAC poll while Maretta had the same honor in the OAC.

Four days before Cortland and Ithaca battle for the Cortaca Jug in football, the Upstate New York rivals opened their women’s basketball seasons against each other. No. 20 Ithaca held the Red Dragons to two points in overtime and pulled away for the 64-55 victory.

Maggie Malone’s jumper gave Cortland a 53-46 lead with four minutes to play in regulation, but the Red Dragons didn’t score again in regulation and the Bombers rallied to tie the game at 53-all. Ithaca’s Zoraida Icabalceta scored six of her game-high 19 points in the extra period and finished with four 3-pointers, five rebounds and five assists for the Bombers.

Southern Virginia outscored preseason ODAC favorite Randolph-Macon 27-6 in the third quarter, and the Knights rolled past the Yellow Jackets, 74-56. Abigail Snyder led the charge for Southern Virginia with 16 points on 5-for-9 shooting with four 3-pointers.

On the men’s side, No. 15 UW-La Crosse held off No. 25 St. John’s, 84-80, as All-American Ethan Anderson scored 20 points to lead the Eagles to victory. Anderson’s layup with 5:29 to play put UW-La Crosse in front 69-68 and the Eagles gradually expanded their lead to 78-70. The Johnnies cut the deficit to 80-77 on Carson Schoeller’s three with 31 seconds left, but UW-La Crosse made enough free throws down the stretch to seal the win.

The first game of the Division III basketball season was a thriller, as No. 9 WPI edged crosstown rival Worcester State 73-71 in a game that started at 12:01 am on Tuesday morning. Preseason All-Americans John Lowther and John Adams connected for the go-ahead basket with 21.5 seconds left and then Adams followed that with another bucket to put WPI ahead by three. He finished with 21 points and nine rebounds.

While Ithaca claimed victory on the women’s side of the Cortaca rivalry, the Red Dragons edged the Bombers on the men’s side, 82-80. Similar to the women’s game, Cortland held a seven-point lead with a few minutes to play in the second half. Ithaca pulled within one point twice in the closing minute, but Kareem Lubin made enough free throws to preserve the Red Dragons’ win. Lubin finished with 20 points, 11 rebounds and four assists for Cortland.

George Visconti’s three with 19 seconds left was the difference in Swarthmore’s 71-70 road win at Rowan. Visconti tallied 23 points, six rebounds and five assists for the Garnet.

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