Second Half Surge Lifts #14 Stonehill Past Assumption, 79-68

Senior Mary Louise Dixon scored all 21 of her game-high point total in the second half, shooting 5-for-5 from three-point range over the final 20 minutes, to lead the Skyhawks. (PHOTO BY Jan Volk/SportsPix)

Dixon leads Skyhawks rally with 21 second half points 

EASTON, Mass. (December 4, 2013) – Stonehill College, ranked 14th in this week's USA TODAY Sports Division II coaches' poll, erased a five point halftime deficit in claiming a 79-68 victory over Assumption College, among teams receiving votes nationally in Northeast-10 Conference women's basketball action at Merkert Gymnasium tonight.

Senior Mary Louise Dixon (Wellesley, Mass./Wellesley) scored all 21 of her game-high point total in the second half to lead Stonehill's second half surge as she hit 5-of-6 three-pointers for the night and connected on all six free-throw attempts to go with five rebounds, five assists and a steal. Junior Tori Faieta (Lynn, Mass./Saint Mary's) added 14 points (ten first half) on 6-of-10 shooting with a team-best nine rebounds, two assists and three blocked shots.

Junior Ashley Gendron (Auburn, N.H./Manchester Memorial) contributed a season-high 11 points with six rebounds and three assists, while freshman Kelly Martin (Scituate, Mass./Scituate) chipped in 11 points on 3-of-4 shooting, including her lone three-point attempt, and converting all four free-throws to go with a season-high matching six rebounds, two assists and a steal off the bench.

Stonehill shot 52.2-percent (12-for-23) from the field in the second half, including 8-for-12 (66.7%) from three-point range, to finish at 48.1% (26-54) overall, 10-for-23 (43.5%) from beyond the arc. The Skyhawks also converted 17-of-21 (81%) free-throw attempts and recorded a 36-32 rebounding edge which resulted in a 16-10 advantage in second chance points.

Junior Tori Faieta contributed 14 points, nine rebounds and three blocks. (PHOTO BY Jan Volk/SportsPix)

Junior Caitlin Ackerman (Nashua, N.H./Nashua South) led four Assumption players in double-figures with a double-double effort of 17 points and a game-high ten rebounds (five offensive) with three assists while shooting 7-for-12 from the field. Senior Shannon Ray (Yonkers, N.Y./Ursuline Academy) added 15 points on 7-of-16 shooting with four steals, two assists and two blocked shots, while classmate Jamie Insel (Clinton, N.J./Voorhees) contributed 11 points on 5-of-9 shooting, seven rebounds and six assists. Freshman Morgan O'Brien (Reading, Mass./Reading) chipped in 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting, including 1-for-2 from long distance, and three rebound off the bench.

Assumption finished shooting 47.5-percent (28-for-59) from the field, including 3-for-14 (21.4%) from three-point distance, after being limited to 39.4% (13-33) in the second half, including 1-for-6 from long range. The Greyhounds, who shot 57.7% (15-26) from the floor in the first half, converted just 9-of-14 (64.3%) free-throw attempts for the night.

Assumption led by five (36-31) at the half and bumped the advantage to a game-high seven with an Insel layup on the first possession of the second half. The Greyhounds lead was still seven (43-36) after a Ray three-pointer three-minutes into the frame. Stonehill used a 12-4 run to regain the lead (48-47) with a Gendron jumper with 9:47 remaining. Dixon sparked the run with a three-pointer, followed by another long distance make from junior Amy Pelletier (Beverly, Mass./Bishop Fenwick).

The teams traded the lead back and forth until Dixon drilled a three-pointer to put Stonehill in front for good (54-51), breaking the tenth tie of the contest, with 7:49 left. The Skyhawks extended their lead to nine (67-61) with 3:35 on the clock after back to back three's by sophomore Shannon Brown (Las Vegas, Nev./Centennial) and Dixon. Assumption closed within six (72-66) after a Ray jumper with 1:38 remaining, but Stonehill held steady and made 7-of-8 free-throws, including 6-for-6 from Dixon down the stretch to seal its second-straight win.

Assumption came out in front after a first half which featured eight ties and eight lead changes. Stonehill led by five (23-18) after a Faieta layup midway through the half and then 29-24 on a Gendron jumper with 6:09 on the clock. Assumption responded with a 12-2 run to close out the half, keyed by four points from Ray and O'Brien.

Stonehill (6-2, 3-1 NE-10) is right back in action here at Merkert Gym on Saturday to host Southern New Hampshire University for a Northeast-10 matchup at 1:30 p.m. Assumption (4-4, 1-4 NE-10) travels to Merrimack College on Saturday at 1 p.m.

For the latest on Stonehill Athletics, follow the Skyhawks via social media on Twitter and Facebook. Fans can also download the Stonehill Skyhawks mobile app on iTunes and the Android Market.

Trisha Brown Postgame Interview