#25 Women's Basketball Balanced Against Molloy, 73-60

Carter leads Skyhawks with 14 points, four three-pointers

Carter connected on four three-pointers to lead a balanced scoring effort for the Skyhawks with 14 points. (PHOTO BY Jan Volk/SportsPix)

EASTON, Mass. (December 29, 2018) – Stonehill College, ranked No. 25 in the most recent Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Division II poll and receiving votes in the D2SIDA Top 25 media poll, jumped out to a 21-point lead in the first half and made it stand the rest of the way for a 73-60 victory over Molloy College on day one of the 2018 Stonehill Holiday Classic on Paula Sullivan Court at Merkert Gymnasium this afternoon.

Juniors Grace Carter and Kelsey Shaw paced Stonehill's balanced offensive effort with 14 and 12 points, respectively. Carter connected on 4-of-11 three-pointers and added five rebounds and three assists, while Shaw drained 7-of-8 free throws on her way to a season-high point total and collected five rebounds. Junior Gabrielle Reuter was the only other Skyhawk in double-figures with ten points, seven rebounds, three assists and two blocked shots.

Sophomore Jennifer Worden was among three Stonehill players to finish with nine points, hitting 2-of-3 three-pointers, adding six assists, three rebounds and two blocks. Freshman Kayla Raymond also tallied nine points, with five boards, two assists, two steals and three blocks, while classmate Emily Bramanti chipped in nine points on 3-of-4 shooting from deep, three steals, two assists and two rebounds.

Sophomore Melody Prichard led three Molloy players in double figures with 14 points on 7-of-11 shooting, and three rebounds, while junior Jenna Silletti totaled 12 points, five rebounds and three assists. Senior Tyra Harrison contributed 11 points, while sophomore Marthe Guirand chipped in seven points and eight boards.

Stonehill never trailed in the contest, grabbing a quick six-point lead after three-pointers from Shaw and Raymond two minutes into the game. Carter scored five-straight points, capped by a three-pointer of her own, to push the Skyhawks lead to eight (11-3) midway through the first quarter. Molloy answered with back to back baskets from Prichard and Silletti to draw within four (11-7) with 4:30 to play in the frame, but Stonehill stretched its lead to nine (19-10) with a Raymond jumper with 1:55 to go, before taking a ten point lead (21-11) into the second quarter after a pair of free-throws by Shaw.

Shaw added 12 points for the Skyhawks today. (PHOTO BY Jan Volk/SportsPix)

Stonehill scored the first seven points of the second quarter to extend its lead to 17 (28-11) after a Shaw layup three and an half minutes in. Bramanti buried a three-pointer and Reuter added a basket to the run. Reuter gave the Skyhawks an 18-point lead (33-15) midway through the second and then senior Tayler Wornum gave the hosts a 20-point margin (35-15) with 3:50 to play in the half.

Stonehill's lead hit a game-high 21 points (38-17) with a Bramanti three-pointer with 2:55 remaining in the half, but Molloy scored seven straight to close the gap to 14 (38-24) with under a minute remaining. Carter sent the Skyhawks into the intermission with a 17-point cushion (43-26) by banking in a half-court shot at the buzzer. Reuter opened the second half scoring to push the Stonehill lead back to 19 (45-26), and senior Maty Diabate restored its game-high 21-point cushion (53-32) with 4:43 remaining in the third.

Molloy chipped away and was back within 12 (58-46) heading into the fourth quarter, and was within ten (58-48) after Harrison opened the fourth with a jumper. A Reuter jumper and two Worden free-throws pushed the Stonehill lead back to four (62-48) with 8:34 to play, but the Lions scored six-straight to cut the gap to eight (62-54) after a bucket inside by Guirand with 5:42 still to play.

Molloy was still within eight (64-56) midway through the fourth, but neither team scored until Shaw made two free-throws with 1:51 left to push Stonehill back up by ten. Prichard pulled Molloy back within eight with 1:38 remaining, but Worden made a free throw and then buried a three that sealed the Skyhawks third-straight win and eighth over their last nine.

Stonehill (10-2, 5-2 NE10) is right back in action tomorrow for day two of its Holiday Classic, when it battles No. 9/16 University of the Sciences for an NCAA East Region Championship rematch at 3:30 p.m. Molloy (6-6, 1-3 ECC) faces Assumption College in tomorrow's opening game at 1:30 p.m. USciences handed Assumption a 63-54 defeat in first game of the Holiday Classic.

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