CASTLETON, Vt. – Elms College freshman forward Denisha Parks (Fall River, Mass.) scored a game-high 25 points and was named to the all-tournament team as the Blazers powered past Simmons College in Saturday afternoon's consolation game of the Rutland Herald Tip-Off women's basketball tournament hosted by Castleton State College.
Elms earns its first win of the season to improve to 1-1 overall, while Simmons slides to 0-3 to start its season.
After playing to a 9-9 tie early in the opening period, Elms scored 10 unanswered points over the next seven minutes to stake a 19-9 lead. Parks scored 15 of her 25 points in the opening 20 minutes and finished the first half with nine rebounds as the Blazers scored 13 of the final 21 points of the stanza to post a 32-17 lead.
Elms hit on 14 of 29 (48.3-percent) from the field in the first half, including a 7 for 13 effort from Parks to help build its lead.
The Blazers extended its lead to as many as 20 (47-27) over the first nine minutes of the second half and Simmons could not pull to within fewer than 12 points.
Senior forward Erika Murphy (Torrington, Conn.) added a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds on 4 of 9 shooting from the field, while junior guard Jennifer Normandie (Westford, Mass.) helped spark Elms' offense off the bench with a game-high five assists and six points.
The Sharks were led by Liz O'Connor's (Milton, Mass.) double-double effort of a team-high 13 points and 14 rebounds (eight of which came on the offensive end). In addition, O'Connor dished out four assists and recorded three of Simmons' six blocked shots in the loss.
Olivia LaCroix (Manchester, N.H.) chipped in nine points, added five rebounds and two blocks.
Neither team shot well from three-point range as Simmons connected on just 3 of 19 from beyond the arc for a 15.8 clip, while the Blazers were 0 for 6 from long range.
Elms shot 38.6-percent from the field to the Sharks' 24.2 percentage and also won the free throw battle shooting 60.0-percent from the stripe led by Parks' 5 for 5 mark. Simmons was 6 of 13 (46.2-percent) from the line.
Elms returns to non-conference action on Tuesday, Nov. 22 when it travels to Smith College for a 6:00 p.m. game in Northampton, Mass.