Jan. 16, 2009
LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. - Siena won their third straight game this evening as they easily handled Iona 70-45 at Alumni Recreation Center in Loudonville. Senior forward Heather Stec recorded her fifth double-double of the season as she led the Saints with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Sarah Fullmer scored 14 and Allie Lindemann had 12.
It took Siena (5-10, 4-2) just three minutes to go on a big run and take control of the game. Junior guard Allie Lindemann's 3-pointer sparked a 16-4 run that was capped by Serena Moore's jumper with 12:34 remaining in the first half. The Saints were up 19-8 and seemed to be riding their confidence from the last two games. Iona (10-8, 3-4) couldn't handle the toughness shown by Siena's players as they continually got to the free-throw line. The Saints shot 19-of-23 (82.6%) from the charity stripe, far better than their 12.7 attempts per game and 60.3% average.
Again, Stec was the catalyst for Siena. She scored 12 points in the first half on 3-of-6 from the floor and 6-of-7 from the free-throw line. Junior forward Sarah Fullmer did some damage herself, scoring 13 points in the first half on 5-of-6 shooting. She finished with 14 points, six rebounds and three blocks.
Siena's suffocating defense bothered Iona and forced 25 turnovers. The Saints themselves committed 29 turnovers, but converted 17 to Iona's 13 in transition. The defense never let up and held the Gaels to just 4-of-32 (12.5%) from the field in the second half. Siena's defense allowed 45 points, the fewest allowed since January 26, 2006 (79-44 win over Niagara).
Freshman guard Cristina Centeno had another solid game off the bench. She scored nine points, had five rebounds and five assists. In her last five games (four of them off the bench) she's averaging 10.4 points, 4.8 assists and a 54.1 field goal percentage.
The Saints' bench chipped in again, outscoring Iona 25-11. They have outscored the opponent in the last four games.
Stec continues her superlative play. She is 27-for her last-34 (79.4%) field goal attempts and is averaging 17.8 points and 7.5 rebounds in the last four games.
Siena stands a perfect 5-0 this season when holding opponents under 60 points. The win gives Siena their first 3-game win streak since 2006-07. Their 4-2 start in MAAC play is the best since 2003-04 (the last time they won the regular-season championship).
Siena returns to action Sunday when they host #21 Marist in Loudonville. Game time is scheduled for 2 p.m. It marks the first time Siena's hosted a ranked opponent since November 18, 2005 against #1 Maryland.