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basketball-women-d3 flag | December 5, 2013

No. 3 Montclair State makes huge comeback


NEWARK, N.J. – Junior guard Janitza Aquino drained the game-winning 3-point jumper with 35 seconds left as unbeaten and No. 3 Montclair State rallied from a 22-point second half deficit to post a 70-68 New Jersey Athletic Conference win against Rutgers-Newark in The Golden Dome.
Senior guard Nicosia Henry netted 10 of her game-high 23 points and junior Melissa Tobie notched nine of her 19 as Montclair State used a 28-6 to erase a 21-point deficit in 11 minutes.
The unbeaten Red Hawks fell behind 55-33 with 14:15 left in the game when junior forward Jade Howard hit a jumper. A layup by Courtney Woodard put the Scarlet Raiders (3-3, NJAC 1-1) up 59-38 with 12:50 left before the Red Hawks (5-0, NJAC 3-0) preserved their 33-game regular season winning streak and their 22-game string of regular-season wins in the conference by shutting down the Rutgers-Newark attack.
MSU gained its first lead of the game on a pair of free throws by Tobie which made it 66-65 with 1:50 remaining.
A trey by sophomore guard Arianna Williams put Rutgers-Newark ahead 68-66 with 1:37 left before Henry made the first of two free throws to make it a 1-point game.
Aquino snared a missed shot by the Raiders with 43 seconds left before dropping in the game-winning trey off of a feed by Tobie.
Rutgers-Newark got off three jump shots in the final 13 seconds but could not score the equalizer.
Senior guard ShaQuanna Marshall netted 19 of her 21 points in the opening half and Howard posted 10 of her 16 in the opening half when the Raiders constructed a 45-31 lead.  Neither player scored during the final 13 minutes as three Rutgers-Newark starters, including Howard, fouled out and three others finished the game with four personals.
Henry and Tobie posted double-doubles for the Red Hawks while Marshall and Howard did the same for Rutgers-Newark.
Henry finished with 23 points, 11 rebounds, three steals and two assists while Tobie totaled 19 points, 10 rebounds, five assists, three steals and two blocked shots.  Aquino knocked down three 3-point jumpers on her way to 13 points while junior guard Jenny Malone (North Plainfield, NJ, Roselle Catholic) dished off a game-high seven assists while adding four points.
Marshall tallied 21 points, 11 rebounds, three assists and two steals for the Raiders while Howard added 16 points, 11 rebounds and two blocked shots before fouling out with 2:57 left. Junior guard Courtney Woodard came off the bench to contribute eight points, five rebounds and a team-high five assists.

No. 7 Thomas More 88, Grove City 42

GROVE CITY, Pa. -- Seventh-ranked Thomas More defeated Grove City 88-42 on Wednesday in both teams' Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) opener at the Grove City College Arena.

With the win, the Saints remain undefeated at 6-0 overall and 1-0 the PAC.  With the loss, the Wolverines fall to 1-5 overall and 0-1 in the PAC.

Thomas More scored the first 11 points of the game capped by a lay-up by sophomore guard/forward Sydney Moss with 16:13 to play in the first half. From there the Saints used a 42-12 run to take their biggest lead of the half at 53-12 with 1:42 to play in the opening frame when junior guard Stephanie Krusling made one-of-two free-throws. Thomas More led 55-16 at intermission.

The Saints opened the second half on a 10-2 run capped by a three-pointer by senior guard Katie Kitchen with 15:36 to play in the game to take their biggest lead of the game at 65-18. Grove City went on a 13-4 run to cut the lead to 69-31 when Kathryn Erbelding made one-of-two free-throws with 11:31 to play in the game. That would be as close as the Wolverines would come as Thomas More closed out the game on a 19-11 run for the 88-42 victory.

Junior guard Sydni Wainscott led four Saints in double-figure scoring with a game-high 19 points. Joining her in double-figure scoring was Moss with 17, junior forward Jenny Burgoyne with 13 and Krusling with 10. Moss led the team on the boards with seven rebounds, while senior guard Devin Beasley led the team in assists with eight.

No. 7 Wisconsin-Whitewater 85, Elmhurst 71

WHITEWATER, Wis. -- Wisconsin-Whitewater overcame a 20 point first-half deficit to hand Elmhurst its first loss of the season 85-71. Kaitlyn Thill led the comeback with a double-double, 20 points, including a perfect 12-12 from the free throw line, and ten boards, adding four assists and six steals, all game highs. The Warhawks are 6-1 and the Bluejays fall to 4-1.

There seemed to be a lid on the basket on Whitewater's end of the court as the Warhawks missed their first six shots. On the other end, Elmhurst couldn't miss. The Bluejays dropped in their first four shots to take an early 8-0 lead with 17:12 left in the half. Amy Mandrell put the Warhawks on the board with their first field goal at the 16:00 mark to bring the score to 8-2.

EC rattled off the next nine points to push the lead to 15, 17-2 at 13:18. The Bluejay lead would hit 20 twice, the first time at 11:39 and the second with Whitewater trailing 27-7 with 10:29 left in the half. UW-W was able to close the gap into single digits twice in the remaining ten minutes but Elmhurst scored six of the final eight points of the half to head into intermission with a 45-32 lead.

Whitewater shot just 26 percent from the floor but made up for some of the deficit at the free throw line making 10 of its 11 attempts. Elmhurst shot over 58 percent from the field but only registered four charity shots in the first twenty minutes.

UW-W came out of the locker room firing on all cylinders. An 11-4 run was keyed by seven points from Mary Merg to narrow the margin to six, 49-43 at 17:42. Elmhurst responded with a 13-2 run of its own to extend the lead to 17, 62-45 with 14:23 remaining. The teams traded buckets to make the score 64-47 at the 13:30 mark but the final 13 minutes was all Whitewater.

The Warhawk defense shut down the Bluejays the rest of the way allowing just seven points in the final 13:30 of the game. UW-W's 30-2 run capped by two free throws from Mandrell gave the Warhawks a 77-66 lead. Whitewater outscored EC 38-7 in the final 13 minutes of the game to solidify the comeback win, 85-71.

UW-W turned its shooting efficiency around from the first half making 49% from the field in the second twenty minutes. The Warhawk defense forced 15 turnovers in the second half leading to 21 points but UW-W did most of the damage from the free throw line. Whitewater ended the game 26-29 from the charity stripe while Elmhurst made 10 of their 17 opportunities.

Two Warhawks joined Thill in double figures with Mandrell and Merg each posting 16 points. Four Bluejays recorded double figures led by Hannah Lipman's 19.

No. 10 St. Thomas (Minn.) 56, Augsburg 40

Senior guard Kelly Brandenburg had 14 points and 12 rebounds as the No. 10-ranked Tommies (3-1 overall, 1-0 MIAC) won their conference and home opener with Wednesday night's 56-40 defeat of Augsburg in MIAC women's basketball in Schoenecker Arena.

Jessica Lillquist had 12 points for the Auggies (2-1, 0-1), who had only 11 turnovers but shot just 31 percent from the floor.

The score was tied 26-26 early in the second half, but the Toms got points from five different players during game-changing 17-2 run.

UST drained 5-of-11 from 3-point range in the second half and posted a 44-25 rebounding advantage. UST survived 38 percent shooting but made 13-of-13 at the foul line.

Anna Smith added 11 points and Maggie Weiers chipped in 10 rebounds.