PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Saint Joseph's College (14-3, 4-0 GNAC) topped Johnson & Wales University (15-2, 5-1 GNAC), 62-54 in overtime, in Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) women's basketball action on Saturday afternoon.
Saint Joseph's, which held the lead for all but one possession until the final two minutes of regulation, trailed 52-49 with 24 seconds left when freshman guard Hannah Marks (Waldoboro, Maine) drilled a three-pointer off an Abbie Eastman (Norway, Maine) pass to tie the score and eventually force an extra frame.
The Monks dominated the overtime period, outscoring the Wildcats by a 10-2 margin, by making eight of 10 free throw attempts with freshman guard Kelsi McNamara (West Newbury, Mass.) netting six off a 4-4 charity stripe effort.
Leading by five (49-44) after McNamara connected from downtown with 5:59 left in the fourth quarter, the Monks saw their cushion evaporate when the Wildcats produced an 8-0 run en route to taking a 52-49 lead with 25 seconds on the clock. SJC Head Coach Mike McDevitt '83 quickly called a timeout and drew up a play, which was promptly executed when Marks hit the game-tying three-pointer.
LEADERS – SAINT JOSEPH'S
- Senior center Morgan Cahill (Yarmouth, Maine) posted her seventh double-double of the season – and 33rd of her career – with 18 points and 13 rebounds
- McNamara scored 14 points with six assists and four caroms
- Freshman forward Emily Benway (Rochester, N.H.) tallied 11 points and six rebounds
- Marks came off the bench to score seven points with four rebounds and three assists
- Junior guard Emily Kehoe (Perkinsville, Vt.) chipped in with six points and four boards
- Sophomore forward Norma Waggett (Saugus, Mass.) added six points off a 3-6 shooting effort
LEADERS – JOHNSON & WALES
- Sophomore center Ashley Thompson (Bellingham, Mass.) notched a double-double with 23 points and 13 rebounds
- Sophomore guard Raquel Pederzani (Coventry, R.I.) tallied 11 points and six assists
- Junior forward Bobbie Whitehead (Brooklyn, N.Y.) added five points and five rebounds
- Junior forward Kimberly Viafara (Woodside, N.Y.) pulled down 12 boards
Saint Josephs' shot 37.5% (24-64) from the field, 33.3% (4-12) from three-point distance, and 58.8% (10-17) from the free throw line while Johnson & Wales shot 33.3% (22-66) overall, 23.1% (6-26) from downtown, and 36.4% (4-11) from the FT line.
Saint Joseph's held the lead in rebounds (50-43), turnovers (13-16), points off turnovers (11-4), second chance points (8-4), points in the paint (20-14), and bench points (19-8) in the victory. Johnson & Wales maintained advantages in assists (15-13) and fast break points (4-0) in the losing effort.
With 13 rebounds versus the Wildcats, Cahill reached the 800-rebound plateau on the mark and becomes just the sixth player in program history to pull down at least 800 career caroms…with the win, Saint Joseph's avenges a 2015 GNAC Tournament Semifinal loss (70-62) at the hands of the Wildcats, which went on to defeat Emmanuel College in the 2015 GNAC Championship…the Monks are the first GNAC team to defeat the Wildcats since they fell to Emmanuel on February 3rd, 2015…today's overtime triumph is the Monks' first in OT since St. Joe's defeated Husson University, 82-78 in double-overtime, on November 20th, 2014.
With the triumph, Saint Joseph's improves to 6-5 in the history of the series with Johnson & Wales University, a team that defeated the Monks on a pair of occasions last season.
Saint Joseph's hosts in-state rival University of New England on Monday at 7:00 PM. Johnson & Wales travels to Wesleyan College for a 7:00 PM tip-off on Tuesday.
Saint Joseph's College is Maine's only Catholic liberal arts college, providing a supportive, personalized and career-focused education for more than 100 years. From its 474-acre campus on the shores of Sebago Lake, the College offers more than 40 undergraduate programs to a population of approximately 1,000 students. Saint Joseph's College Online provides certificates, undergraduate and advanced degrees for working adults through an online learning program. For more, visit www.sjcme.edu.