March 7, 2008
ALBANY, N.Y. - Iona's trapping and pressure defense held Loyola to 34-percent shooting and forced 20 Greyhounds turnovers, as Loyola closed its season with a 74-59 loss to the second-seeded Gaels on Friday morning in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Quarterfinals at the Times Union Center.
The Greyhounds (13-17) committed turnovers on their first five possessions of the game and had 13 in the first half. Iona held them to 7-of-25 (28-percent) from the field before halftime.
Despite the early miscues, Loyola stayed close in the game's first several minutes. Kaitlin Grant tied the game at 10-10 with 12:14 to play in the first half, and Candice Walker cut Iona's lead to three, 18-15, with 7:51 remaining.
Iona(18-12), however, went on an 18-6 run to close the half, taking a 36-21 lead at the break on two Lauren DeFalco free throws with 18 ticks left.
DeFalco finished with 19 points to lead all scorers.
"They have trapped and pressured teams from the beginning of the year, right from the first game," Head Coach Joe Logan said. "We knew they were going to do that coming into the game, and we just didn't respond well to it."
Iona went ahead by as many as 23 on two occasions, the first on two Thazina Cook free throws with 9:11 remaining.
DeFalco made 5-of-6 shots, 3-of-4 from 3-point range, and was 6-of-6 from the free-throw line. Cook added 15 points, and Anna McLean had 10 points.
Siobhan Prior finished with a team-high 18 points, making three 3-pointers. She also scored 18 in Loyola's First Round win over Rider on Thursday. Both totals were one off her career-high.
Kaitlin Grant came off the bench to score 11 points and lead Loyola with nine rebounds.
Iona will meet third seeded Fairfield at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday in the MAAC Semifinals.