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Basketball Spotlight:
Devils Rally to Defeat Chargers

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

By Bob Heller
USIP Sports Information Director

A combination of strong shooting and solid defense in the second half of tonight's Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference women's basketball game between the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia and Dominican College enabled the Devils to erase a seven-point second half deficit and defeat the chargers 73-67 tonight at the Bobby Morgan Arena.

The Devils improve to 7-6 overall and 3-4 in league play. Dominican falls to 8-4 overall and 4-3 in league play.

The Devils placed three players in double figures led by Shelby Rance's (Sr., Central Columbia HS/Bloomsburg, Pa.) 18 points. Allison Weiss (So., Springfield HS/Springfield, Pa.) added 17 points and nine rebounds, connecting on eight of nine shots from the field while Erin Chesnavich (Fr., Bishop O'Reilly HS/Pittston, Pa.) chipped in 10 points, six rebounds and three blocks. Lori Sedina (Sr., Lower Cape May HS (NJ)/Springfield, Pa.) added seven points, all in the second half to go along with five boards, five assists, three blocks and a steal. Rashanna Edwards (Sr., West Windsor-Plainsboro HS/Cherry Hill, N.J.) paced the Devils with eight assists.

Kristen Tracey led the Chargers with 18 points (6-12 FG, 5-8 3FG). Dana Rotio chipped in 17 points while Adele Laskowski added 12 and a team-high seven rebounds.

USP used a 61.5% shooting effort (16-26) in the final stanza to comeback from a five point halftime deficit and later a seven point margin. While the Devils offense was connecting on all cylinders, the Devils defense was forcing Dominican's offense to sputter as the Chargers made just seven of 28 shots in the period (25%).

The Devils trailed by five at the break, 40-35 but quickly regained the lead, making three of their first four shots to take a 41-40 lead. The Chargers responded with an 8-0 run to take their biggest lead of the second half, 48-41 at the 15:49 mark, getting five of the eight points from Jackie Tracey-Spitaleri. For the next seven plus minutes, the Devils would hold the Chargers scoreless, going on a 12-0 run to take a 53-48 lead.

Weiss' put-back started the rally and Rance and Kaitlin DuRoss (Fr., Ocean City HS/Sea Isle City, N.J.) followed with baskets to pull USP within one 48-47. Weiss added two more layups to give the Devils a 51-48 lead before Rance completed the rally with a short jumper at the 10:07 mark to make the score 53-48. The Chargers finally broke the drought as Kristen Tracey sank a three-point field goal at the 8:33 mark, 7:16 since their last field goal to make the score 53-51.

USP still led by two 57-55 when the Devils opened some breathing room with a 7-3 run, capped by a Sedina 'trey' to take a 64-58 lead with just 2:41 left and expanded the lead to seven, 66-59 at the 1:36 mark. Dominican would make one last surge, scoring five points in a matter of seconds off a pair of USP turnovers to pull within two 66-64 with just 1:16 left. On USP's next possession, Sedina threaded the needle with a perfect pass to DuRoss underneath for a layup and subsequent Charger foul. Kaitlin completed the three point play and the Devils led by five 69-64 with just 49 seconds left. DuRoss would finish the game with a career-high seven points (3-4FG).

Sedina blocked Tracey's shot on the Chargers next possession and the rebound was gathered in by Edwards who was fouled immediately. Edwards made both free throws to all but seal the win with a 71-64 lead but Tracey nailed her fifth 'trey' of the game on the Chargers next possession to make the score 71-67. Edwards was fouled again with 16 seconds left and sank both free throws to provide the final margin of victory.

For the game the Devils made 27 of 49 shots (55.1%) from the field (2-9 3FG) while the Chargers connected on just 38.4% of their shots (21-54, 7-19 3FG). The Devils held a decisive 37-22 advantage on the boards which helped offset their season high 28 turnovers. Both teams shot well from the free throw line with the Devils connecting on 17 of 19 (89.5%) and the Chargers 18 of 25 (72%). The Chargers also committed 17 turnovers.

The Devils return to action on Saturday, January 13, 2007 when they take on the Felician College Golden Falcons at the Bobby Morgan Arena. Tip is set for 1 p.m.

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