Women's Game Recaps #70 - 3/1/19

• The NE10 playoffs began on Friday night with the higher seeds (and home teams) winning while the ECC playoff spots are now locked in with one game each left across the league. We start with the first post season contests of the campaign…

Merrimack notched their twentieth victory (the first time they’ve been able to say that since 2005), controlling the second half to eliminate Southern Connecticut from the NE10 tournament, 75-62. The Owls more than held their own in the first half, arriving at the break with a 36-32 edge but the Warriors seized command with an 11-0 blitz out of the locker room (43-36). MC arrived at the end of three periods with a 52-47 edge and really blew the game open thanks to a 10-2 spell early in the last frame, taking a 65-51 lead with just over six minutes left. SCSU had no response and thus end the season at 14-15. Lindsay Werner (18 points; 4-9 3FG), Denia Davis-Stewart (15 points, 12 caroms), Kate Mager (14 points), Mayson Kimball (13 points, 8 boards) and Karlee Alves (9 points, 10 assists) shared the wealth for a Merrimack team which dominated in the paint (30-6) and points-off-turnovers (20-3). Kiana Steinauer (21 points, 17 boards) capped off her season with yet another double-double (her 24th, which leads the nation) while Imani Wheeler (16 points) and Allie Smith (14 points) added double digits. Merrimack moves on to face Le Moyne in one Sunday’s quarterfinal games in Syracuse.

AIC bludgeoned Southern New Hampshire in Springfield, 79-55, to punch their ticket to the NE10 quarterfinals and a date at Bentley on Sunday. The Yellow Jackets jumped on the Penmen right away, rolling to a 15-3 lead off the top and using a 13-0 run late in the second quarter to establish a hefty 36-15 lead at the interval. AIC never let up, running the lead to 59-30 after three frames on the way to their success. Dana Watts (17 points, 13 boards, 5 assists), Alyssa Guyon (16 points), Rashana Siders (16 points) and Dominique Boyd (14 points, 11 boards) led the way for AIC, who crushed SNHU on the glass (42-19) and out-shot them, 51%-33%. Gyanna Russell’s 13 points topped the SNHU scoring with Kylie Lorenzen collecting 12 points and 4 boards to possibly, depending on further post season action, end her brilliant career atop the Penmen all-time list in both categories (1,798 points and 932 rebounds).

Roberts Wesleyan dropped Bridgeport by a 65-49 count to ensure they grabbed the #5 seed in the ECC tournament while the Purple Knights will enter the fray with the #6 seed. Tashayla Sutorius (22 points; 6-9 FG, 3-3 3FG), Taylor Bynoe (19 points, 10 boards; 8-12 FG) and Emily Miller (14 points, 6 rebounds) filled the stat sheet for the Redhawks as they shot better than UB (42%-27% FG) and were far more efficient from three-point land (RWC 7-13; UB 4-23 3FG). Samnell Vonleh (17 points, 13 rebounds, 6 rejections; 6-9 FG, 5-6 FT) was excellent for the Purple Knights but had minimal assistance. RWC built a 37-21 halftime lead on the strength of a 25-4 bomb that spanned the first two periods and never looked back; Bridgeport had a better second half yet couldn’t seriously threaten the Redhawks. RWC will visit #4 seed LIU Post on Wednesday while Bridgeport will travel to #3 seed NYIT the same night in the ECC’s first round.

Daemen shot a scorching 54% from the floor and netted an eye-catching 16-23 from three-point land to deal Mercy a 90-46 setback in their penultimate ECC games of the season. The Wildcats, already set as the #2 seed in the ECC, were especially on fire (at both ends) in the first half, posting a massive 51-14 halftime bulge that was split almost evenly between the periods (26-5 in the first quarter; 25-9 in the second period). Daemen shot 20-33 (60%) in the half with a toasty 10-12 coming from long range. Imbedded in the half was a 32-0 stretch (21 points to end the first quarter and 11 to start the second one), rendering the second half moot. The Mavericks, who went fourteen minutes without a point, have lost six in a row and will wrap up their season at Roberts Wesleyan on Sunday. Jordan Heinold cashed in a career-high 21 points for Daemen, making 7-7 from long distance (7-10 overall), while Katie Titus (14 points) didn’t miss a shot, going 6-6 from the floor and 2-2 at the stripe. Erin Egan added 13 points and 9 boards for Daemen, who won the window (44-21) and held Mercy to 35% shooting (5-22 from 3FG land). Amber Brown was Mercy’s only double digit scorer with 10 points.