Jan. 9, 2012
LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J. - Senior Miriam McKenzie and junior Katie Sheahin combined for 40 points, but it was not enough as the Loyola University Maryland women's basketball team dropped a, 67-61, nail biter at Rider on Monday afternoon.
The loss dropped Loyola to 5-10 overall and 1-3 in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play, while Rider improved to 10-5 and 2-2 in the MAAC.
McKenzie finished with her second double-double of the season and 11th of her career, scoring a season-high 21 points to go with 12 rebounds. Sheahin finished with 19 points and seven rebounds along with three steals, giving her 26-straight games with a steal and her 10th-straight multi-steal game.
Rider had four players score in double figures, with Caitlin Bopp and Alli Heller leading the way with 16 apiece. Bopp had a double-double with 14 rebounds, while MyNeshia McKenzie added 11 points and Sironda Chambers had 10.
Trailing 57-46 with 4:13 remaining in the game, the Greyhounds made a furious comeback get back within striking distance.
Sheahin sparked the rally, knocking down a 3-pointer from the left wing to bring Loyola within single digits at 57-49.
On the ensuing Rider possession, freshman point guard Kara Marshall stripped the ball from Emily Fazzinni and found McKenzie for a fastbreak layup to bring the Greyhounds within six. Marshall finished the game with eight points, four assists and two steals.
MyNeshia McKenzie responded with a trey for the Broncs, putting the home team on top 60-51 with 3:27 remaining.
Sheahin answered immediately, this time hitting a 3 from the corner off a pass by McKenzie to get the Hounds back within six.
The junior then made a huge defensive play for Loyola, stripping the ball from Bopp and diving on the ground for the steal. McKenzie was fouled on the break and made one-of-two from the line. On the miss, Sheahin grabbed a rebound over Bopp and put home a layup, cutting the deficit to three points at 60-57 with 2:09 remaining.
The Greyhounds had the ball down by three, but a turnover gave it back to Rider with 1:30 left.
Bopp hit a pair from the free throw line to push the Broncs’ advantage back to five with just over a minute remaining.
Marshall then took over, hitting an acrobatic driving layup on the next possession, switching from her left to her right hand in mid-air and putting it off the glass for two to cut the Rider lead back to three at 62-59.
The Greyhounds pressed on the ensuing inbounds pass, and this time it was Alyssa Sutherland making the big defensive play, stripping the ball from Alyssa Parsons that led to another layup by Marshall, bringing Loyola within one point at 62-61 with 36 seconds left.
Sutherland had a career-high five steals in the game.
Loyola was forced to foul Parsons on the next possession. The point guard hit the front end of a one-and-one, but missed the second. But it was Bopp grabbing the offensive board for the Broncs with less than 30 ticks remaining. Parsons would be fouled once again, and this time made both freebies to extend the Broncs’ lead to four at 65-61 with 28 seconds left.
The Greyhounds had one last gasp left, but a turnover and two made free throws by Heller sealed the game.
Loyola came within one point earlier in the first half, after Nicole Krusen hit her first of two 3-pointers in the contest, bringing the Greyhounds within one at 43-42 at the 10:32 mark. Rider responded with a 9-2 run to build an eight-point advantage with 7:30 to go.
Rider started the game on a 17-5 run and led by as many as 13 twice in the first half. The Broncs did their damage in the paint, scoring their first 12 points inside thanks to a hot shooting start by Bopp who made her first five field goals.
Loyola closed the half on an 8-0 run, holding the Broncs scoreless for the final 4:20 of the half, to come within four at 30-26 at the half. McKenzie had 15 points and eight rebounds at the break.
The Greyhounds are back at home on Friday, Jan. 13, when they host their annual Field Trip Day at 11:30 a.m. against Saint Peter's.