Thursday, February 22, 2007
By Bob Heller
A 57 percent shooting effort in the first half by the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia women’s basketball team provided the Devils with the impetus to cruise to a 65-48 victory over Georgian Court University tonight in Lakewood, New Jersey.
The win improves the Devils record to 17-9 overall and 14-7 in Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference games. Georgian Court drops to 5-21 overall and 3-18 in league games. USP maintains their third place position in the league standings as the regular season winds down.
The Devils made 16 of 28 shots in the opening 20 minutes (57.1%) and finished the game shooting 52% (26-50, 3-8 3FG) from the field. The Lions made just nine of 29 shots in the first half (31%) and finished the game shooting 32.2% (19-59, 4-10 3FG).
Shelby Rance (Sr., Central Columbia HS/Bloomsburg, Pa.) led the Devils with 18 points and four steals. Erin Chesnavich (Fr., Bishop O'Reilly HS/Pittston, Pa.) joined Rance in double figures with 16 points (7-9 FG). Rashanna Edwards (Sr., West Windsor-Plainsboro HS/Cherry Hill, N.J.) added nine points and tied her career-high with 11 assists. Edwards also had four steals on the night. Lori Sedina (Sr., Lower Cape May HS (NJ)/Springfield, Pa.) led the Devils with six rebounds.
Tiffany Brown led the Lions with 12 points while Sophia Iloh and Stephanie Longdo added 11 and 10 respectively. Iloh and Brown had eight rebounds apiece as did Ashley Lobbato, helping to offset her 1-for-13 shooting effort from the field.
USP led wire-to-wire, jumping out to an early eight point lead 11-3 Georgian Court cut the lead in half before the Devils went on a 10-4 run to take a 21-11 lead with 11:12 left. After the Lions again cut the lead in half, and pulled within five, 23-18, the Devils closed out the half with a 14-4 spurt to take a 37-22 lead at the break. Baskets by Chesnavich and Hayley Lentz (Jr., Wilson Area HS/Easton, Pa.) started the run. GCU’s Shannon Brown followed with a layup before Chesnavich added a three-point play and Lentz another layup to give the Devils a 32-20 lead. Miesha Barksdale’s jumper made the score 32-22 before the Devils got layups from Rance, Davitra Goode (Sr., Central Islip HS/Central Islip, N.Y.) and a single free throw from Chesnavich to close out the first half scoring.
Kamilah Bergman opened the second half scoring for the Lions, making the score 37-24 before the Devils ran off 11 straight points to take their biggest lead of the game, 48-24. Chesnavich sank two quick baskets and Rance followed with a layup and a three-point field goal. Edwards closed out he run with a layup at the 14:12 mark. Over the next six minutes, the Lions shaved five points off the lead and pulled within 19, 53-34 before Kaitlin DuRoss (Fr., Ocean City HS/Sea Isle City, N.J.) nailed a three-point field goal to boost USP’s lead back to 22, 56-34 with 7:59 left. The lead fluctuated between 20 and 23 points until Allison Weiss (So., Springfield HS/Springfield, Pa.) completed an “And-1” to give the Devils a 65-41 lead with 3:34 left. The Lions scored the final seven points of the game to make the final margin 17 points, 65-48.
The Lions finished the game with a 36-28 advantage on the boards (17-5 on the offensive glass) and committed 23 turnovers (11 assists), leading to 20 USP points. The Devils shot slight better from the free throw line than their hosts (10-14 for USP, 6-14 for GCU) while producing a solid assist/turnover ratio (21/20). The 20 turnovers produced nine points for the Lions.
USP will close out the regular season with a road contest at Felician College in Rutherford, New Jersey on Saturday, February 24, 2007. Tip off is at 1 p.m. USP will then open their post season with a CACC Quarterfinal game on Wednesday, February 28, 2007 with a yet to be determined opponent.