#2 Bentley Defeats Stonehill, 66-50

Sophomore Tori Faieta led Stonehill with a game-high 14 points to go with six rebounds, two assists and two blocks. (PHOTO BY Bert Lane)

15 minute first half scoring drought, 30-0 Falcons run dooms Skyhawks

WALTHAM, Mass. (December 8, 2012) – Bentley University, ranked No. 2 in this week's USA Today Sports/Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Division II poll, held Stonehill College scoreless for a nearly 15 minute stretch, fueling a 30-0 run and went on to claim a 66-50 victory in Northeast-10 Conference women's basketball action at the Dana Athletic Center this afternoon.

Junior Lauren Battista (North Easton, Mass./Oliver Ames) led a balanced Bentley effort with 13 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field, draining her lone three-point attempt, to go with a game-high nine rebounds and two assists. Senior Courtney Finn (Winthrop, Mass./Winthrop) and junior Christiana Bakolas (Manchester, N.H./Manchester Central) each added ten points for the Falcons. Finn added six rebounds, while Bakolas made 3-of-4 shots from the field and chipped in seven assists and three boards. Junior Jacqui Brugliera (Fitchburg, Mass./Wachusett Regional) finished with nine points on 4-of-9 shooting.

Sophomore Tori Faieta (Lynn, Mass./Saint Mary's) led the way for Stonehill with a game-high 14 points on 5-of-10 shooting, converting her lone three point attempt, and going 3-for-3 at the line to go with six rebounds, two assists and two blocked shots. Junior Mary Louise Dixon (Wellesley, Mass./Wellesley) added eight points, six boards, five assists and a block, while classmate Asia Ewing (Westford, Mass./Westford Academy) chipped in six points, four assists and three boards.

Bentley finished shooting 41.3-percent (26-for-63) from the field, including 52.8% (19-36) in the first half to assist in building a 38 point (49-11) halftime lead. The Falcons made 6-of-14 (42.9%) three-pointers in the opening half, finishing at 31.8% (7-22) for the afternoon and converted 7-of-9 (77.8%) free-throws for the contest. Bentley posted a 41-34 rebounding advantage and outscored the visitors 24-10 in points off turnovers with Stonehill committing 20 for the afternoon to 15 for the Falcons.

Junior Mary Louise Dixon chipped in eight points, six rebounds, five assists and a blocked shot. (PHOTO BY Bert Lane)

Stonehill shot 33.9-percent (29-56) from the field overall, including 50% (16-32) in the second half to outscore the hosts 39-17 over the final 20 minutes, but made just 3-of-24 (12.5%) first half shots, including 0-for-8 from three-point range. The Skyhawks made 6-of-13 (46.2%) three-pointers in the second half and converted 6-of-7 (85.7%) free-throws for the contest.

Faieta converted a three-point play to give Stonehill a one point lead 51-seconds into the contest, but the Skyhawks next basket wouldn't come for 14:36 as Bentley scored the next 30 points to take control of the game. Stonehill missed its next 16 shots and turned the ball over 11 times during its scoring drought before freshman Paige Marshall (Braintree, Mass./Braintree) broke the streak with a baseline jumper with 4:33 left before halftime.

Stonehill added a basket from Dixon before Bentley closed the half with a 14-4 run to take a 38 point lead (49-11) into halftime. Battista scored nine of her 13 points in the opening half on 4-for-4 shooting, including a three-pointer, while Bakolas and freshman Jane White (Amherst, N.H./Souhegan) each added eight and Brugliera and senior Caleigh Crowell (Harwich, Mass./Worcester Academy) both chipped in seven first half points. The Falcons posted an 18-2 advantage in points off turnovers in the half and saw a 20-2 margin for bench scoring.

Despite the lopsided score line at the half, Stonehill wouldn't go down without a fight, opening the second half with a 14-3 run to cut the deficit to 27 (52-25) four minutes into the frame after a jumper and free-throw by Marshall. The Skyhawks kept chipping away, drawing within 25 (56-31) with a layup by sophomore Amy Pelletier (Beverly, Mass./Bishop Fenwick) with 12:08 remaining and then cutting the gap to 24 (57-33) on a layup by sophomore Ashley Gendron (Auburn, N.H./Manchester Memorial) with 11:20 still to go.

Stonehill got as close as 19 (59-40) after a Dixon three with 8:50 to play, but time started to become the Skyhawks enemy as Bentley collected itself enough for a 7-2 spurt to regain a 24 point lead (66-42) after a free-throw from junior Tyler Parker Kimball (New Britain, Conn./New Britain) with 4:14 left. The Skyhawks were able to cut the deficit to 16 (66-50) after a Faieta layup with 2:14 remaining, but neither team scored the rest of the way.

Stonehill (8-1, 5-1 NE-10), which missed a chance to match its best start since opening 9-0 in 2007-08, is off for the next three weeks for exams and the holiday break before getting back on the court on Saturday, December 29, for a non-conference matchup at Georgian Court University at 1 p.m. The Skyhawks next home game isn't for another 35 days when it hosts The College of Saint Rose on Saturday, January 12, at 1:30 p.m. Bentley (7-0, 6-0 NE-10) visits Dowling College on Tuesday at 5 p.m.

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