#18 Women's Basketball Edges Southern N.H., 49-48

Grip blocked seven shots, breaking the program's single-season record along the way to lead the Skyhawks defensive effort tonight. (PHOTO BY Bob Blanchard)

Grip headlines Skyhawks 17 block game by breaking program's single-season record on her way to seven on the afternoon

EASTON, Mass. (February 3, 2018) – Stonehill College, ranked No. 18 in this week's D2SIDA Top 25 Media Poll and receiving votes in the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Division II poll, fought its way past Southern New Hampshire University, 49-48, for a key Northeast-10 Conference women's basketball victory as part of Alumni Weekend at the College on Paula Sullivan Court at Merkert Gymnasium today.

Senior forward Elizabeth Grip (Shrewsbury, Massachusetts/Shrewsbury) led a Stonehill defensive effort that racked up 17 blocked shots with seven, while adding eight points and five rebounds. Her second block of the day was her NE10-leading 74th of the season, breaking the previous mark of 73 blocked shots by Kelsey Simonds '10 during the 2007-08 season. Grip finished the game with a 79 blocks heading into the final five regular season games, plus the postseason.

The defensive effort held SNHU to 22.7-percent shooting (15-for-66), including 3-for-20 (15%) from three-point distance. Stonehill finished shooting 37.7% (20-for-53) from the floor.

Senior Samantha Hyslip (Westford, Massachusetts/Westford Academy) led a balanced Stonehill offensive effort with ten points, eight rebounds and three blocks, while classmate Kelly Martin (Scituate, Massachusetts/Scituate) pulled down a team-high ten rebounds to go with eight points, six assists and two steals. Senior Courtney Walsh (Windham, New Hampshire/Central Catholic) chipped in nine points on 4-of-8 shooting, including 1-for-2 from beyond the arc, with three rebounds, three assists and a blocked shot with a second remaining on a potential winning basket by SNHU senior Jennifer Shelp (Apalachin, New York/Vestal) to preserve the Skyhawks 15th-straight NE10 win and tenth-straight win overall.

Hyslip paced the Skyhawks with 10 points, eight rebounds and three blocks (PHOTO BY Mike Tureski/SportsPix)

Junior Kylie Lorenzen (Holliston, Massachusetts/Holliston) led Southern New Hampshire with a double-double, despite 2-for-19 shooting, largely in part to Stonehill's interior defense. She totaled 12 points, aided by 8-for-8 shooting at the free-throw line, ten rebounds, three assists, two blocked shots and two steals. Freshman Sarah Deyo (Attleboro, Massachusetts/Attleboro) added eight points on 3-of-4 shooting, including 2-for-3 from beyond the arc, and four rebounds.

Stonehill limited SNHU to 15-percent shooting (6-for-40) in the opening half, including 1-for-13 (7.7%) from deep, to aid in taking a ten-point halftime lead (27-17). The Skyhawks led by as much as 13 (27-14) after Hyslip capped a run of nine-straight points with a jumper with 43-seconds to play in the half. That stretch was part of a larger 13-2 run for the Skyhawks in which five different players scored, led by four from Grip as well as a Walsh three-pointer.

Senior Catherine Stinson (Lynn, Massachusetts/Lynn English) capped the half with a three-pointer to send SNHU into the lockerroom trailing by ten. The Penmen carried the momentum into the third quarter, scoring the first eight points of the frame to quickly close within two (27-27) after a Lorenzen layup a minute and a half in.

Junior Brianna Camara (Fall River, Massachusetts/Durfee) knotted the score (29-29) for SNHU four minutes into the third quarter and then Lorenzen gave the Penmen their only lead of the game (31-30) with two free-throws a minute later. Stonehill answered with four quick points from sophomore Gabrielle Reuter (Plymouth, Massachusetts/Lawrence Academy) and junior Tayler Wornum (Randolph, Massachusetts/Archbishop Williams) to reclaim a lead it would not relinquish (34-31) with four minutes to go in the third.

Shelp tied the game for a second time (34-34) with a layup with 2:19 remaining in the third, but Stonehill was able to forge a four-point lead (40-36) by the end of the frame. The Skyhawks opened an eight point lead (44-36) two minutes into the fourth quarter after layups from Grip and Hyslip and held a nine point cushion (49-40) following a Martin three-pointer with 3:53 remaining.

However, Stonehill went scoreless the rest of the way and a Deyo triple with 19-seconds left had SNHU back within one (49-48). Martin uncharacteristically missed a pair at the line with 15-seconds to go, giving the Penmen a chance to snatch a last-second win, but Walsh was able to get just enough of a piece of Shelp's corner jumper and time expired from there to allow the Skyhawks to survive.   

Stonehill (19-2, 15-1 NE10) hits the road for a pair of games next week, starting Tuesday night at Saint Michael's College at 5:30 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. Southern New Hampshire (14-8, 10-6 NE10) hosts No. 3/3 Bentley University on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m.

For the latest on Stonehill Athletics, follow the Skyhawks via social media on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Fans can also download the Stonehill Skyhawks "Front Row" mobile app, powered by PrestoSports, on iTunes and the Android Market.