BROOKLYN, NY – After holding double digit leads in each half, the St. Joseph's College women's basketball team couldn't hold off Old Westbury, suffering an 84-78 setback on Thursday night at Brooklyn Technical HS.
Junior guard Ashley McQuillan (Brooklyn, NY/St. Francis Prep) paced St. Joseph's with 21 points and swiping a season-high tying seven steals. Freshman forward Megan Moran (Syosset, NY/St. Dominic's) notched her first career double-double scoring 13 points with 10 rebounds.
St. Joseph's (4-6, 1-0 HVWAC) used the long ball to jump out to an early 10 point lead on triples by McQuillan, Joanna Marciniec (Glendale, NY/Baruch) and Teresa Mangan (Cleveland, OH/St. Joseph's) over a span of a minute. Old Westbury (7-2, 3-1 Skyline) would respond with a 12-2 run to knot the game at 16-all just before the midway point of the half and both teams would remain within arm's reach for the remainder of the period, with the Panthers taking a 42-40 lead into the lockers.
The Lady Bears raced out to another fast start to begin the second stanza utilizing a 14-2 run to take a 60-48 lead. Old Westbury would respond immediately scoring 12 unanswered to equalize the game again. St. Joseph's managed to pull away slightly building a 69-61 advantage on a Marciniec jumper with 8:04 to play. But the offense then struggled over the next seven minutes, producing only three points and committing 10 turnovers, allowing the Panthers to take the lead for good.
Despite shooting a measly 1-for-15 (7%) from behind the arc and 19-for-43 (44%) from the charity stripe, Old Westbury used their size advantage to dominate the glass, led by Ruth Vargas' game-high 11 rebounds in only 13 minutes of play. The Panthers held a 63-52 rebounding advantage and grabbed 26 on the offensive end, which they converted into 27 second chance points. The Panthers were also opportunistic of the 34 Lady Bears miscues, scoring 34 points off turnovers.
McQuillan knocked down five triples and shot 50 percent from the field (7-for-14) en route to her third 20-plus point game of the season. Moran has scored in double figures in the last three games and pulled down double digit rebounds for the first time in her career. Marciniec finished with 15 points and grabbed six rebounds. Mangan contributed 13 points to round out the four Lady Bears in double figures.
Old Westbury was led by the duo of Kim Weathers who tallied 27 points along with seven steals, sharing game-high honors with McQuillan, and Deslyn Applewhaite who scored 20 points.
St. Joseph's hits the long road to Louisville, Kentucky right after Christmas for a two-game set against USCAA foes St. Mary-of-the-Woods and Spalding taking place on December 28th and 29th at Spalding University. In the latest coaches' polls, all three teams are in the top 10, with St. Mary-of-the-Woods ranked sixth, Spalding seventh and St. Joseph's rounding out the top 10.