Jan. 4, 2018
LOUDONVILLE, NY - In their largest margin of victory this season, Siena Women's Basketball took down MAAC opponent Iona 64-51 in their league home opener on Thursday morning. The Saints improved to 7-7 on the season and 2-1 in league play.
Senior guard Kollyns Scarbrough led all scorers with 20 points, seven rebounds and four steals. Maddie Sims added 13 points and seven rebounds for Siena (7-7, 2-1). This is Siena's fourth straight game shooting over 40% from the field, while also tying a season-high 75% shooting from the free-throw line.
The Gaels (0-14, 0-3) were led by Rebekah Justice who is averaging 1.3 points per game and exploded as she scored 15 points and grabbed six rebounds. Five-time MAAC Rookie of the Week, Toyosi Abiola, notched 13 points and tallied a career-high seven rebounds.
Iona opened up scoring and quickly began the game on a 7-0 run, but Siena came right back into it and after four straight free throws by Scarbrough the Saints jumped ahead 16-12. Alexis Lewis cut the deficit to just two on a layup, but Gibson drained her fourth three of the season and put Siena up 19-14 after one.
Siena held onto the lead in the second quarter and did not let the Gaels score until 5:20 mark forcing Iona to score just eight points in the entire frame, which was tied for their third least amount of baskets scored in the second frame. Going into the half, the Saints led 35-22 after ending the frame on a 10-2 run.
Just like she did in the first quarter, Abiola hit a trey to open up scoring in the third frame, while the Gaels began on a 5-0 run. The Saints forced Iona to turn the ball over six times in eight straight possessions and end the frame with seven of their 21 turnovers. Siena led 48-36 with one quarter to play.
Scarbrough started the Saints off on a 5-0 run; she would score eight of her 20 points in the final frame. Siena led by as much as 19 points, 57-38, but the Gaels brought it within 12, 61-49, with just under three minutes to play. While Siena outscored Iona 16-15 in the frame, this was the Gaels fifth fewest points scored in the fourth quarter, but most since December 16 against St. Francis (Brooklyn). The two teams finished the game with six free throws made, three for each team to end the contest with the Saints on top 64-51.
The Saints season-high 75-percent free throw shooting was helped by a season-best 4-4 by Joella Gibson, and both Hayley Winter and DeAnna Winston tying their career-best 2-2. The 51 points scored is the fewest Siena has allowed all season and Iona's fifth fewest points scored all season. While the Gaels outrebounded the Saints 38-28, Siena record 16 second-chance points compared to 15 by Iona.
Siena remains in the Capital District as the host Niagara on Sunday, January 7 in the third of four doubleheaders with the Siena men at the Times Union Center in Albany, New York. Tip-off is set for 1 p.m.