Saint Anselm Turns Back Women's Basketball, 63-53

Hyslip led the Skyhawks with 14 points, five rebounds and six assists. (PHOTO BY Mike Tureski/SportsPix)

Andrews and Duarte combine for 40 points to lead Hawks

EASTON, Mass. (February 15, 2017) – Saint Anselm College, ranked ninth in this week's D2SIDA East Regional poll, used a big second quarter to open an eight point halftime lead and made it stand the rest of the way for a 63-53 victory over Stonehill College in Northeast-10 Conference women's basketball action on Paula Sullivan Court at Merkert Gymnasium tonight.

Seniors Candace Andrews (Boston, Massachusetts/Worcester Academy) and Kaila Duarte (Dorchester, Massachusetts/Beaver Country Day) combined for 40 points to lead Saint Anselm to its fifth win in six games. Andrews scored a game-high 26 points on 9-of-20 shooting, converting 8-of-9 free throws, to go with six rebounds, seven assists and three steals, while Duarte posted a double-double of 14 points and 13 rebounds with three assists, a blocked shot and a steal. Junior Ali Glennon (Bedford, New Hampshire/Bedford) chipped in with eight points for the Hawks.

Junior Samantha Hyslip (Westford, Massachusetts/Westford Academy) paced Stonehill with 14 points on 6-of-13 shooting, five rebounds (four offensive) and a career-high matching six assists. Sophomore Maty Diabate (Holden, Massachusetts/Wachusett Regional) posted her third career double-double (all this season) with 12 points, on 6-of-12 shooting, and a career-high 14 rebounds (seven offensive), three assists and a blocked shot. Sophomore Tayler Wornum (Randolph, Massachusetts/Archbishop Williams) contributed eight points and three boards, while freshman Grace Carter (Arlington, Massachusetts/Arlington) chipped in season-highs of six points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals.

Stonehill held a five-point lead (17-12) after a quarter of play, led by six points each by Hyslip and Diabate. Saint Anselm followed by opening the second frame with nine straight points to take a four point lead (21-17) after Andrews split two free-throw attempts, scoring three points during the run to go with six by Duarte. The Skyhawks answered with six straight points of their own to regain the lead (23-21) with a Wornum layup with 5:41 to play in the half.

Diabate posted her third double-double of the season with 12 points and a career-best 14 rebounds. (PHOTO BY Peter Buehner/SportsPix)

Saint Anselm closed the half with a 15-4 run to carry an eight-point cushion (36-28) into the intermission. The Hawks grabbed a four-point lead (28-24) after two Duarte free throws with 3:21 remaining in the half. After a Carter triple for Stonehill, Saint Anselm stretched its lead to five (32-27) with four straight points by Duarte before Andrews and junior Erin Waters (Pawling, New York/Pawling) closed out the first half scoring.

Saint Anselm pushed its lead into double figures for the first time (40-30) after an Andrews layup less than two minutes into the second half. The lead grew to 13 (47-34) with two Andrews free throws with 2:52 to play before Stonehill was able to trim the lead to six (47-41) with a Carter triple with 1:21 remaining in the third.

Junior Clairee Putnam (Windham, New Hampshire/Windham) closed out the third quarter scoring for Saint Anselm, but Stonehill scored four of the first five points of the fourth to close within five (50-45) three minutes in. The Skyhawks were still within five (52-47) with 5:52 to play, but Saint Anselm scored the next seven points to open a 12 point lead (59-47) after a layup by senior Caitlyn Abela (North Easton, Massachusetts/Oliver Ames) with three-minutes to go and the Skyhawks wouldn't get within ten the rest of the way.

Despite the loss, Stonehill remains in a tie for the fifth and final Northeast Division spot in next week's NE10 Tournament with Merrimack College (11-13, 9-10 NE10) with two games to play, after the Warriors were defeated by Assumption College, just a game behind fourth place Saint Michael's College (12-12, 10-9 NE10), who fell to nationally-ranked Bentley University tonight. Merrimack holds the head-to-head tiebreaker over Stonehill, but the Skyhawks have one win over Saint Michael's to date and the two play here in Easton to close out the regular season next Tuesday.

Stonehill (10-13, 9-10 NE10) is back in action on Saturday when it visits Southern New Hampshire University for an NE10 battle at 1:30 p.m. The Skyhawks return to Merkert Gymnasium next Tuesday, February 21, to host Saint Michael's College on Senior Night to close out the regular season at 5:30 p.m. Saint Anselm (17-8, 12-7 NE10) visits nationally-ranked Bentley University on Saturday at 6 p.m.

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