Pioneers Drop NEC Opener 56-47 to St. Francis Brooklyn

Fairfield, Conn. (Jan. 5, 2012)—The Sacred Heart Women's Basketball team fell to St. Francis Brooklyn 56-47 in the 2013 Northeast Conference opener Saturday afternoon in the William H. Pitt Center in the first game of the men's/women's doubleheader. The loss snapped Sacred Heart's 15-game home win streak dating back to January 3, 2012. The Pioneers drop to 8-5 on the season, and 0-1 in conference.

Gabrielle Washington (Mesa, Ariz.) led the Pioneers with 13 points, while senior Morgan Merriman (Seattle, Wa.) flirted with her second career double-double with nine rebounds and eight points.

The teams opened the game exchanging baskets in the first four minutes. Elidh Simpson landed a layup and one to give SFC the advantage and kick off an 11-0 Terrier run. 

Down 18-8, Washington hit a three to end the Pioneers' three-minute scoring drought, but it didn't slow down SFC who responded with three consecutive buckets. 

After over three minutes without a basket for either side, Kiley Evans (Cazenovia, N.Y.) hit back-to-back shots to cut the Terriers' lead to 10, 27-17, with just under seven minutes left in the half.

Just before the four-minute media timeout, SFC added six more with a pair of treys, increasing their lead to 33-17. With 20 seconds left in the half, Blair Koniszewski (Vienna, Va.) knocked down a triple to send SHU into the halftime break down 35-20.

St. Francis Brooklyn landed the first two buckets of the second half, upping their lead to 40-20 before Ericka Norman (Chino Hills, Calif.) and Evans added seven for the Pioneers.

With 3:06 on the clock, Koniszewski drained a three to bring the Pioneers within eight, 49-41. Two minutes later, she did it again, this time pulling SHU to within 50-44 with just over a minute left.

The Terriers added six more from the charity stripe in the final minute sealing the win.

St. Francis Brooklyn's Eilidh Simpson led all scorers, racking up 15 points.

Sacred Heart wraps up the home stand, hosting the LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds Monday night at 7:00 p.m.