ALBANY, N.Y. - Maja Gerlyng's attempt at a game-tying three with three seconds to go clanged off the right side of the rim as Siena's late comeback bid fell short in a 48-45 defeat to Manhattan Friday night at Times Union Center. The Saints fell for the fifth time in their past six games while the red-hot Jaspers have now won eight of nine.
Siena (8-13, 6-5) trailed 46-37 at the 4:26 mark before their rally attempt. Serena Moore scored all of the Saints' points during an ensuing 8-0 run that got Siena as close as 46-45 at the 2:50 mark. But Siena missed its final three shots and committed two costly turnovers, while Manhattan (16-6, 8-3) converted its free throws down the stretch.
Moore scored 15 of her game-high 19 points during the second half and completed the double-double with 10 rebounds and three blocks. But she also committed nine key turnovers as the Saints' were plagued once again in that department.
Manhattan entered the game ranking fourth nationally in scoring defense and ninth in turnover margin and again used both of those strengths to their advantage. Siena turned the ball over 22 times leading to a 21-9 edge in points off turnovers in Manhattan's favor.
The teams played to four ties and three lead changes in the first half before the Lady Jaspers broke things open early in the final stanza. Monica Roeder scored all of the Jaspers points during a 7-0 run to start the half and build Manhattan's lead to its biggest of the game at 11 (30-19). Siena fought back the rest of the way but the hole proved to be too deep.
Gerlyng scored 10 of her 12 points in the first half, complimenting Moore's effort. Both teams shot well with the Saints firing at a 40.9% clip and Manhattan at 42.9%. Siena, which out-rebounded the Lady Jaspers by 13 in last month's first meeting between the two schools, again controlled the glass with a 32-18 advantage.
Roeder led Manhattan with 14, while the MAAC's leading scorer Abby Wentworth scored all 13 of her points in the first half and Lindsey Loutsenhizer added 10. With the win, the Jaspers improved to 10-1 on the road this season.
The Saints return to action Sunday when they host Niagara for National Girls and Women in Sports Day in a 2 p.m. tip-off at the ARC. Siena will honor its student-athletes from all 11 of the college's women's athletic programs during a special halftime ceremony.