Stonehill Rallies Past Saint Anselm, 67-62 (OT)

Sophomore Amy Pelletier provided a lift off the bench with 17 points on 5-of-9 shooting from three-point range. (PHOTO BY Bert Lane)

Pelletier and Dixon lead Skyhawks to season-opening win

EASTON, Mass. (November 14, 2012) – Stonehill College took its first lead of the night in overtime and made it stand in claiming a season-opening 67-62 victory over Saint Anselm College in the Northeast-10 Conference women's basketball opener for both at Merkert Gymnasium tonight.

Sophomore Amy Pelletier (Beverly, Mass./Bishop Fenwick) and junior co-captain Mary Louise Dixon (Wellesley, Mass./Wellesley) led four Stonehill players in double-figures. Pelletier scored a team-high 17 points off the bench as she drilled 5-of-9 three-pointers, while Dixon filled the stat sheet with 16 points, five rebounds, five assists and two steals.

Junior Asia Ewing (Westford, Mass./Westford Academy) added 14 points on 5-of-8 shooting, including 3-for-4 from three-point range, with seven rebounds and two steals. Sophomore Tori Faieta (Lynn, Mass./Saint Mary's) registered 12 points, a team-high eight rebounds, three blocked shots and two assists. Junior Abbey Lalime (Orleans, Vt./Lake Region Union) provided a spark off the bench with eight points, hitting both three-point attempts, and adding two assists and two steals.

Stonehill finished shooting 42.9-percent (24-for-56) from the field, including 48.4% (15-31) after halftime and 3-for-5 (60%) in overtime. The Skyhawks connected on 11-of-23 (47.8%) three-pointers and took advantage of 19 Saint Anselm miscues for a 27-9 margin in points off turnovers. Stonehill's bench also outscored the Hawks reserves 25-6 on the night. Saint Anselm shot 50% (25-for-50) from the field, including 60% (12-20) in the second half, but made only 1-of-5 (25%) shots in the overtime period and converted just 8-of-14 (57.1%) free-throws. The Hawks outrebounded the Skyhawks 36-28, resulting in a 13-5 break in second chance points.

Junior Mary Louise Dixon added 16 points, five rebounds and five assits. (PHOTO BY Bert Lane)

Junior Briana Jones (White Plains, N.Y./Roy C. Ketcham) led all scorers with 18 points for Saint Anselm as she made 8-of-14 shots from the field, including 1-for-2 from three-point range, with five rebounds and two steals. Sophomore Allie Jones (Wakefield, R.I./South Kingstown) posted 15 points, on 6-of-11 shooting, and a game-high nine rebounds (four offensive), three assists, three blocks and two steals. Senior Curran Leighton (Dover, N.H./Dover) chipped in ten points on 4-of-6 shooting and five boards.

Stonehill trailed by ten (52-42) after a Jones jumper with 9:25 to play and were still down eight (57-49) after a three-pointer by junior Ashley Viselli (Groveland, Mass./Pentucket Regional) with 6:25 to play before rallying. Ewing sparked the comeback with a three pointer with five minutes to play to pull the Skyhawks within four (57-53). Pelletier followed with a three with 4:11 remaining that closed the gap to a point (57-56).

Stonehill had two possessions with a chance to take its first lead of the night, but was unable to get over the hump in regulation. Junior Meg Morrissey (South Kingstown, R.I./South Kingstown) drained two free-throws to push the Saint Anselm lead back to three (59-56), ending a five minute scoring drought, with 1:47 on the clock.

Faieta missed a layup on Stonehill's next possession, but Ewing forced a turnover at the other end and then drilled a three to knot the score for the first time since it was 8-8 with 34-seconds remaining. Saint Anselm was unable to get a shot off on its next possession, resulting in its third shot clock violation of the night.

Stonehill took immediate control in the overtime session after not holding a lead all night prior. Dixon opened the overtime scoring with a jumper 56-seconds in, marking Stonehill's first lead of the contest. Faieta followed with a layup and after Jones made one of two at the line for Saint Anselm at the other end, the Skyhawks extended the lead to five (65-60) on another Faieta basket with 2:18 to go.

Junior Tori Lehr (Cohasset, Mass./Cohasset) broke a stretch of 9:38 without a field goal for Saint Anselm with a jumper to pull within three (65-62) with 1:47 left in the extra period. The Hawks wouldn't score again and Stonehill secured the win with two Dixon free-throws with four seconds to go.

Stonehill (1-0, 1-0 NE-10) is right back in action as it hosts its Tip-Off Classic on Friday and Saturday in Merkert Gymnasium. The Skyhawks will face Goldey-Beacom College on Friday at 7:30 p.m., with Assumption College and Caldwell College playing the opening game at 5:30 p.m. Saint Anselm (2-1, 0-1 NE-10) hosts Southern New Hampshire University next Tuesday at 5:30 p.m.

Highlights and Coach Brown postgame interview