Martin scored 15 of her game-high 23 points in the second half to lead the Skyhawks to victory. (PHOTO BY Peter Buehner)
Seniors steer Skyhawks to 11th-straight victory for 25th 20-win season
COLCHESTER, Vt. (February 6, 2018) – Stonehill College, ranked No. 10 in this week's D2SIDA Top 25 Media Poll and 22nd in the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Division II poll, posted its 11th-straight win to reach 20 victories for the 25th time in program history with a 68-54 decision over Saint Michael's College in Northeast-10 Conference women's basketball action at the Ross Sports Center tonight.
Stonehill has won 11-straight dating back to the New Year and 16 in a row in NE10 play to reach 20-wins for the 25th time in program history. The Skyhawks have won 20 games for the first time since the 2014-15 campaign and tenth time in head coach Trisha Brown's 17 seasons in charge. The NE10 Northeast Division-leading Skyhawks also clinch a first round bye and a home quarterfinal round game for the upcoming NE10 Tournament with four regular season games remaining.
Seniors Kelly Martin (Scituate, Massachusetts/Scituate), Courtney Walsh (Windham, New Hampshire/Central Catholic) and Samantha Hyslip (Westford, Massachusetts/Westford Academy) led Stonehill to the win, combining for 54 of the Skyhawks 68 points. Martin scored 15 of her game-high 23 points in the second half, finishing 7-for-14 from the field, including 2-for-5 from three-point range, and converting 7-of-9 free-throws, to go with a team-high eight rebounds, two assists and three steals. Walsh added 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting, seven rebounds and three assists, while Hyslip tallied 14 points on 7-of-12 shooting, and two boards.
Walsh added 17 points, seven rebounds and three assists for the Skyhawks. (PHOTO BY Peter Buehner)
Senior Leah Spencer (Brockton, Massachusetts/Archbishop Williams) led Saint Michael's with 17 points, including ten in the fourth quarter, on 6-of-12 shooting, three rebounds and two assists, while junior Samantha Delaney (Smithtown, New York/Smithtown East) added 12 points, a game-high nine rebounds and two steals. Sophomore Brianna Purcell (Bedford, New Hampshire/Bedford) chipped in nine points, three boards and four steals.
Stonehill led start to finish, scoring the first eight points of the game, including the first five by Walsh on a layup and three-pointer. The Skyhawks carried a five-point lead (14-9) into the second quarter and stretch the lead to 11 (22-11) after a pair of Martin free-throws three-minutes in. Saint Michael's closed back within five (22-17) two minutes later after six-straight points, including four by sophomore Taylor Miller (Falmouth, Massachusetts/Falmouth), but the Skyhawks fired off ten-straight to open a 15-point advantage (32-17) just 90-seconds later. Sophomore Kelsey Shaw (Bar Harbor, Maine/Mount Desert Island), Walsh and Martin all connected from beyond the arc during the run.
Stonehill took a 13-point lead (36-23) into halftime and the lead would not dip inside double-figures until Saint Michael's closed within nine (48-39) after a Purcell layup 1:37 into the fourth quarter. The Skyhawks closed the game out from there, using an 11-0 run to open a game-high 20-point lead (62-42) after a layup from senior Elizabeth Grip (Shrewsbury, Massachusetts/Shrewsbury) with 3:54 to play.
Stonehill (20-2, 16-1 NE10) is back in action on Saturday, when it visits Franklin Pierce University at 1:30 p.m. The Skyhawks return home on Wednesday, February 14, to host Merrimack College at 5:30 p.m. Tickets for Stonehill home games can be purchased online in advance at stonehillskyhawks.com. Saint Michael's (8-14, 5-12 NE10) visits Assumption College on Saturday at 1:30 p.m.
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