BEVERLY, Mass. – Fiona O’Dwyer and Liz Daley combined for 42 points to lead Emmanuel in a 65-62 win against Endicott on Tuesday . The Gulls, who were fighting for their first-ever win against Emmanuel in program history, battled throughout, but came up short in the non-conference action played at MacDonald Gymnasium.
The Saints, ranked 18th in the latest USA Today Poll and 20th in the most recent D3Hoops.com Top 25 Poll, improve to 8-1 on the season and run their program record against Endicott to 16-0. Endicott will enter the new year with a 6-2 record.
Emmanuel senior forward Fiona O’Dwyer led all players with 22 points, just over her season average of 20.0, and 15 rebounds, collecting her fourth double-double of the year. O’Dwyer went 9-18 from the floor and was a perfect 4-4 from the free-throw line, helping a Saints team that shot just under 45 percent from the field for the game.
Along with O’Dwyer, Daley powered the Saints, scoring a career high of 20 points, going 7-9 from the floor, 4-5 from the line and 2-4 from behind the arc. She also hauled in eight rebounds and dished out 5 assists in just 20 minutes of action.
Jennifer White led the Gulls with 16 points on 4-7 shooting and 2-4 from the three-point line.
The Saints used an 11-0 run to open up a 13-4 lead through the first seven minutes of play, but Endicott was able to tie the game at 17, before Daley helped her team climb back in front. Daley was perfect in the first half, 4-4 from the field, 2-2 from downtown and 3-3 from the free-throw line for 13 points and the Saints led 31-23 with 4:30 left to play in the half.
Endicott used a 13-0 run to end the half ahead 35-31. The run included a three-pointer by Kayleen Whall and three free-throws by White who fouled outside the arc. Whall came off the bench to score 13 points for the Gulls, while grabbing six rebounds.
Emmanuel again came out firing in the second half, needing less than six minutes to reclaim an eight point lead, thanks to multiple jumpers by O’Dwyer and Jennifer Bujnowski, who finished with twelve points in the game.
Senior captain Jen McBrien and the Gulls did not fade, and several fast breaks led by McBrien, who had eight assists in the contest to lead all players, helped the Gulls tie the game at 54 with under nine minutes remaining.
Junior forward Samantha Crough, the final Gull in double figures with 12 points, gave Endicott the lead again with a layup with just over a minute to play, but O’Dwyer answered seconds later and Emmanuel got a big stop down the stretch on a steal by Laura Benvenuto, one of her game-high three thefts.
Each team was 12-28 in the first half, good for a 42.9 percent from the floor. The Gulls cooled off after the break, however, shooting 35.7 percent in the second half. Emmanuel improved to 45 percent, in the second period. The Gulls hit 5-12 (41 percent) from long-range in the contest, with the Saints going just 2-8.
White led the Gulls with seven boards, but the Saints bested the hosts 39-29 on the glass. Crough had a pair of blocks for the Blue and Green, as did Bujnowski and O’Dwyer for the Saints.