Jan. 24, 2004
Senior Lonnie Brown had 15 points and seven rebounds, while fellow senior Jenel Stevens added 12 points and 11 boards to lead Canisius College (8-8, 3-4 MAAC) to a 60-56 women's basketball victory over Siena (10-8, 6-3 MAAC) Saturday night in the Koessler Athletic Center.
The victory snapped an eight-game losing streak against the Saints for Canisius and was the Griffs' first win in the series since Feb. 25, 2000.
Sophomore Cheri Wittlieb had 13 points and shot 42.5 percent from behind the arc for the Griffs, while fellow sophomore Jess Steeves had four points and seven rebounds. Guard Becky Zak tallied seven points and six assists. The double-double outing for Stevens was the 28th of her career.
Canisius trailed 47-46 with 11:18 to play, when the Griffs went on an 11-2 run to take control of the game. Brown notched seven points during the stretch. The Saints responded with seven-straight points to pull within one at 57-56 with 1:34 to play.
The Griffs got a couple offensive rebounds on their next possession, and Stevens nailed two free throws to give Canisius a three-point cushion. The Golden Griffins got a defensive stop, Wittlieb went 1-for-2 from the line, and Canisius got three offensive rebounds on free throws with less than 30 seconds to play to ice the game.
"You just hope that you bring your 'A' game every night," said Canisius coach Mike Decillis. "I wouldn't have been disappointed if we lost. We came out playing hard, diving on the floor and rebounding. That's all I can ask for."
"The Griffs have a good team, and we just got out worked tonight," said Siena coach Gina Castelli. "They did a good job executing on both ends of the court. We found a way to stop Jenel (Stevens) from scoring, but she burned us on the boards tonight."
The teams seemed to be evenly matched at the start of the game. Both the Saints and the Griffs traded basket for basket until Canisius pulled away with a 13-5 run midway through the frame and led 35-30 at the break. Siena started the second half with a 13-6 run to take the 47-46 lead. Siena shot 47.2 percent from the field but committed 19 turnovers and was outrebounded 20-12 on the offensive glass.
The Saints will wrap up their road trip to Buffalo with a match-up against Niagara on Monday. Game-time is scheduled for 7pm.