STANDISH, Maine - #10/14 Saint Joseph's College (14-0, 2-0 GNAC) defeated Albertus Magnus College (13-2, 1-1 GNAC), 77-63, in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) women's basketball contest at the Harold Alfond Center on Thursday evening.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
The Monks held a slim 22-21 edge following a seesaw first quarter, but dominated the second frame to the tune of a 28-9 advantage en route to attaining a 50-30 lead heading into intermission.
The conference counterparts were tied 29-29 after Albertus Magnus junior center Rah Rah Thompson (Bridgeport, Conn.) made a layup with 6:44 before the break, but Saint Joseph's changed the complexion of the contest with a 21-1 run, which included six three-pointers and spanned the remainder of the second quarter.
Saint Joseph's, ranked 10th and 14th in this week's D3hoops.com and Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) national polls, respectively, extended the lead to a game-high 26 points when senior guard Julia Champagne (Brunswick, Maine) drilled a three-pointer three minutes into the third quarter.
The Falcons countered with a 21-7 surge to cut the SJC cushion down to 12 points (65-53) with 7:52 remaining in the contest, but the Monks answered with eight unanswered points to reclaim the 20-point cushion.
BEYOND THE BOX:
Tonight's win extends the Monks' season-opening win steak to 14 games, the longest such string in program history.
Saint Joseph's set new program single-game records for three-pointers made (15) and three-point attempts (35) in tonight's victory. Seniors Hannah Marks (Waldoboro, Maine) and Kelsi McNamara (West Newbury, Mass.) connected for five trifectas apiece on the evening.
McNamara's missed free throw attempt with 28 seconds left in the second quarter snapped her streak of 23 consecutive free throws made. The streak began with a 4-4 effort from the charity stripe in a win over Husson on December 8th.
Tonight's triumph is the Monks' 43rd-consecutive victory at home and the 20th straight regular-season win versus GNAC opponents.
STATS OF THE GAME:
Three-point shooting proved to be the difference in tonight's victory, as the Monks shot 42.9% (15-35) from downtown compared to the 21.1% (4-19) performance posted by the Falcons…Saint Joseph's dealt 20 assists on 27 field goals made…St. Joe's won despite committing 17 turnovers, the team's second-highest total this season.
LEADERS – SAINT JOSEPH'S:
- McNamara notched her fourth double-double of the season with 24 points and a career-high 13 assists
- Senior forward Emily Benway (Rochester, N.H.) netted 17 points with six rebounds
- Marks contributed 15 points with three steals
- Champagne added 12 points, six rebounds, and four assists
LEADERS – ALBERTUS MAGNUS:
- Thompson posted her 11th double-double of the season with 18 points and 13 rebounds and was 7-8 from the floor and 4-4 from the FT line
- Shyla Osmond (New Haven, Conn.) scored 17 points with six rebounds, two assists, and a pair of steals
- Jill Johnson (New Haven, Conn.) contributed 12 points with six assists
Saint Joseph's is now 16-0 in the history of the series with Albertus Magnus College.
Saint Joseph's hosts GNAC foe University of Saint Joseph on Saturday at 1:00 PM.