KEENE, N.H. – Eighth-seeded Regis College fell to top seed Keene State College, 58-36, in the opening round of the 2012 ECAC New England Championship at Spaulding Gym on Wednesday night. The Pride finishes its season at 21-6 overall. The top seeded Owls (18-9) advance to the semifinals where they will face fourth seed Colby-Sawyer College.

Colby-Sawyer moved on with a 69-66 victory over fifth seed Suffolk University.

In other first-round action, second seed Smith defeated seventh seed Rivier 56-31. The game between third seed Endicott and sixth seed Clark was postponed due to the storm and will be played on Thursday. Both semifinal games will be played at Spaulding Gym on Saturday. Keene State will take on Colby-Sawyer in the first game at 1 p.m. and Smith will go up against the winner between Endicott and Clark at 3 p.m. The championship game will be played at the highest remaining seed on Sunday. If KSC reaches the finals, the game will be played at 2 p.m.

Senior Stephanie Crawford (Rockland, Mass.) scored seven points and freshman Emilee Marro (Bedford, N.H.) pulled down a game high nine rebounds for the Pride.

Senior Sara Laudano (North Haven, Conn.) led a balanced Owl offense with a game high 14 points. Senior Courtney Cirillo (Windsor Locks, Conn.) and junior Siobhan Carnell (Quincy, Mass.) each finished with eight points.

Keene State jumped out to an early lead and never looked back. Leading 8-6, the Owls went on a 16-2 run to go up 24-8 at the 9:46 mark of the first half. Laudano had 11 points, including three baskets from behind the arc during the spurt.

Regis struggled to get going in the first half, shooting just 20% (4-20) from the field and committing 14 turnovers.

The Owls, who led 29-12 at the half, continued their strong play coming out of the break. Freshman Sarah Phelan (Northbridge, Mass.) hit a lay-up and a put-back in consecutive trips down the floor, and Laudano knocked down her fourth three-pointer of the game to push the lead up to 45-19 with 9:27 to play.

KSC shot 35% (25-72) from the field. Both teams had trouble from behind the arc. The Owls hit just five of 22 attempts (23%) while the Pride connected on just one of its 12 attempts (8%). KSC had a slim 47-43 advantage on the boards.

Release courtesy of Keene State College Sports Information