Feb. 14, 2010
LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J. - Loyola fought off two strong Rider rallies Sunday, at Alumni Gymnasium in Lawrenceville, N.J., including one in the final minutes of the game. But in front of a reported crowd of 1,338, the Greyhounds shot a full 10 percent better than the Broncs and used their offensive advantage to edge Rider, 68-65.
Miriam McKenzie posted a double-double with a game-leading 18 points and 10 rebounds. Erica DiClemente and Kaitlin Grant each added 13 points. Grant also grabbed three steals and DiClemente led the `Hounds (11-13, 6-7 MAAC) with four assists. Devon Carey finished with 10 points - just one away from the senior guard's career-high - and Katie Sheahin turned in nine points and grabbed five boards, three steals and two blocks.
Local Baltimore product Caitlin Bopp scored 15 points for the Broncs (3-22, 1-13 MAAC) and pulled down a game-high 14 boards. Point guard Amanda Sepulveda also scored 15 and had eight rebounds, and Cintella Spotwood and Sarah Homan balanced out the offense with 13 and 11 points each.
Offensive rebounding allowed the Broncs to rally. Rider had the advantage on the boards, as they out-rebounded Loyola 49-33. Rider's total was one off of the Greyhounds' season high number of rebounds allowed. Bopp and Homan took advantage of every missed shot, helping the Broncs to 12 second-chance points.
However, Loyola used offensive efficiency and a strong transition game to hold the Broncs at bay. The Greyhounds shot 46.6 percent from the field, while holding the Broncs to a mark of just 36.6 percent. McKenzie, Grant and DiClemente each netted six shots from the field while Carey made four.
In transition, the Greyhounds came away with 17 points off 17 turnovers, and scored eight fastbreak points off of 10 steals. The Broncs managed just four steals, and were unable to convert any of them into fastbreak buckets.
DiClemente started off scoring four straight to put Loyola on the board. The Greyhounds never trailed after the guard's two layups, pulling away to lead by as much as 11 points with just over three minutes left in the half.
The Greyhounds were up 30-19 with exactly one minute left in the first half, when Amanda Heller netted a three to spark a 7-0 run.
Sepulveda then used an acrobatic, spinning jump shot to cut the lead to six points. Stephanie Wisniewski then grabbed an offensive board and put it in from under the basket at the buzzer to make the score 30-26 at the half.
Rider continued to pressure Loyola in the second half, but the Broncs' defense failed to match their offense early on, as the Greyhounds still managed to pull out to a 38-31 lead four minutes in.
A fastbreak layup by Grant at 12:21 put the Greyhounds back up by 11. Both teams scored on their next two possessions, keeping Loyola's lead at 11.
But again, Loyola saw that lead disappear. Rider slowly began mounting a comeback, coming to within five points with two Sepulveda free throws at the five-minute mark. Sepulveda then cut Loyola's lead to just two points with a three, making the score 55-53.
Forward Meredith Tolley followed up with a trey of her own on the other end, but Spotwood responded with one as well, and once again the Greyhounds found themselves up by only two.
But two points would be the closest the Broncs would get. McKenzie and Sheahin combined for six free throws in the final minute of the game, stymieing Rider's comeback effort.