Feb. 5, 2005
The balanced Siena Saints (10-10, 7-4) took care of business in a thrill-a-minute game that saw the Green and Gold come up with a 66-64 win over Niagara University (12-9, 7-5) in front of 2,108 fans at the Alumni Recreation Center this afternoon who came out to celebrate National Girls and Women in Sports Day.
After Eva Cunningham cold heartedly hit a three to tie the game for the fourth time at 64 apiece with (:58) remaining. Off a timeout, junior Whitney Cave was setup by a Lauren Surber pass to put the Saints up 66-64. Despite gaining the lead, the Purple Eagles had a chance to win but a wide open three from the wing for Chantelle Wilson, a 50% three-point shooter, was off line.
Cave had her fifth career double-double with 10 points and 12 caroms in the win. She recorded her seventh offensive rebound of the game with 2.9 seconds left on the clock off a missed free throw by Surber. Cave was not fouled and held the ball until the buzzer sounded.
The Saints were sparked on in the second half by freshman Laura Menty who hit on 7-of-9 shots after halftime on her way to a 20 point five rebound performance to pace Siena.
Senior led tri-captain Surber had a career-high eight assists to go along with 12 points and five rebounds in the victory.
MAAC Preseason Player of the Year Eva Cunningham had a game-high 28 points on 10-of-15 shooting. The Purple Eagles got better than two-thirds of their offense from the one-two punch of Cunningham and Shaunna Ambrose (19 pts.).
The Saints have now won six of their last seven games and in that span have wins against the teams that started the day ahead of them in the standings (Canisius, Loyola and Niagara.)
Siena is back in action for the second game in eight days on Monday with a 6 p.m. tip-off on the road against Rider. The Saints return home for a doubleheader with the men's basketball team at the Pepsi Arena on Thursday with a 6 p.m. scheduled start against the Marist Red Foxes.