Dec. 11, 2003
The Holy Cross women's basketball team ended its three game losing skid with a thrilling 59-58 victory over Siena College on Thursday night in Worcester, Mass. Junior center Lisa Andrews (Concord, Mass.) hit a free throw with 15 seconds remaining in overtime to win the game for the Crusaders. Holy Cross evened its record at 4-4 on the season, while the Saints dropped to 3-5 overall.
The Crusaders found themselves in a 24-14 hole at the half, after a turnover-plagued first half. Holy Cross' 14 points were the second lowest total in 29 seasons of women's basketball, since scoring just 13 points versus Connecticut on December 7, 2000. The Purple also committed 18 turnovers and were out-rebounded 20-6, including a 12-1 advantage on offensive rebounds. Despite all of that, HC was only down 10 points at the break, after trailing by as many as 14 points with 4:13 left in the first half.
Holy Cross battled back into the game in the second half, behind a 10-point spurt by senior guard Kristin Popovics (Gorham, Maine) in a four-minute window, setting a season-high point total. Popovics' layup at the 11:05 mark in the second half gave the Crusaders their first lead of the game at 33-32. HC would extend its lead to as many as four points with 10 minutes remaining, before the Saints answered with three 3-pointers in a 13-0 run to claim a 45-38 lead with 6:35 left in regulation. Holy Cross responded with a 7-2 run to cut the lead to 47-45 at the 4:49 mark. A layup by senior co-captain Mary Rose Campbell (Richmond, Va.) reclaimed the lead at 49-48 for the Crusaders at the 2:42 mark. Siena would take a four-point lead after a three-pointer by Nathalie Marchino with just 33 second remaining, but the Crusaders battled back once again, as freshman guard Brittany Keil (Sparta, N.J.) sank two free throws with 8 seconds on the clock to send the game into overtime.
The extra stanza saw Holy Cross jump out to a five-point lead at 58-53 with 3:32 left, after a pair of free throws by junior Maggie Fontana (Barrington, Il.). The Saints came back to knot the score at 58-58 on a three-pointer by Michelle Blot with 1:21 to go. Andrews made one-of-two free throws with 15 seconds left to give the Crusaders a one point lead and senior co-captain Patty Fitzgerald (Cranston, R.I.) stole a Saints pass with 1 second left to seal the victory for HC.
The Saints, who enter a 10-day break due to final exams, will return to action on December 22nd when they travel to face Duquesne University.