BRONX, N.Y. - For the previous three games the Saints were showing vast improvements and inching closer to their second win of the season. On Thursday their hard work paid off as Siena staved off tournament host Fordham 49-47 on the final day of the 2010 Fordham Holiday Classic.
Buoyed by an all-around team effort on both ends of the court, Siena (2-8) capitalized off their full court pressure which turned Fordham (7-8) over 12 times in the second half, leading to 15 of the Saints' 24 points in the stanza.
Despite playing a limited amount due to foul trouble, Serena Moore led the Saints with 14 points in just 20 minutes of action on 7-for-9 shooting and Maja Gerlyng added 14 more as the Saints' improved to a perfect 7-0 all-time against the Rams. Moore, who averaged 12.5 points and 8.5 rebounds during the tournament, was later named to the Fordham Holiday Classic All-Tournament Team.
After battling back and forth to a 25-all tie at the half, Siena opened the final 20 minutes flying. The Saints' full court pressure gave the Rams' fits, forcing seven turnovers on Fordham's first nine second half possessions. As a result, the Saints went on a 13-2 run to build an 11-point lead (38-27) at the 12:07 mark and never trailed again.
Fordham made things interesting late and got as close as a basket with possession of the ball and 11.6 seconds to go, but the Saints' defense clamped down and received the stop they needed to hold on for the victory.
Siena allowed a season-low 47 points in the win and turned Fordham over 17 times as opposed to just five assists. Offensively, the Saints used timely shooting in knocking down a season-best percentage of 48.8% (21-for-43) from the floor.
Becky Peters led Fordham's comeback charge with 17 points on 6-for-7 shooting along with four steals while Kyara Weekes added 11.
Siena rings in 2011 right back here in the greater New York City metropolitan area on Sunday when they open MAAC play against Iona. Game time is 2 p.m. from New Rochelle.