BROOKLYN, NY – Abigail Kangudie made the first start of her collegiate career a memorable one and Candice Leatherwood displayed her scoring prowess as the Sacred Heart women's basketball team (7-12, 3-5 NEC) kept the game out of LIU Brooklyn's (8-11, 4-4 NEC) reach, 50-46, Saturday afternoon at the Steinberg Wellness Center. The victory ends a three-game drought for the Pioneers.
How it happened…
Kangudie ignited the SHU offense earning the game's first points on a turnaround layup by the right block, 2-0, 43 ticks into the afternoon. A contested drive by Adrianne Hagood and a right-wing trey from the release of Leatherwood worked up a seven-point Pioneers lead all while keeping the Blackbirds out of the scoring column.
Drew Winter connected on a mid-range jumper to cut into the Pioneers' rhythm, which spiraled an uninterrupted six-point flurry by the Blackbirds, 9-8, with more than half of the quarter played. The hosts added six more points to take custody of the lead behind the first quarter horn, 14-12.
Leatherwood leveled the playing field in the second quarter's first possession and the first of two Asia McCray baskets put the Pioneers in front for the good, 16-14, with 8:41 remaining in the window.
With under a minute remaining in the game's final quarter, the Blackbirds competed against the clock executing a pair of three-point plays gambling Leatherwood's trips at the free-throw line.
The redshirt-junior went 4-of-4 before a near costly miscue on a Pioneers' inbound play saw reigning NEC Co-Player of the Week, Denisha Petty-Evans, finish down the other end for two, 49-46, with 10 seconds remaining.
Leatherwood split her last pair of attempts at the line before Carter committed a foul to negate another three from the Blackbirds and ultimately settle the final.
Kangudie's career-high was comprised of a team-best 15 rebounds and eight points. The forward shot 40-percent from the field and swatted one Blackbirds' shot attempt.
Leatherwood notched her first 20-plus point performance in six games (21) in large part to going 10-of-14 at the free-throw line. The guard also grabbed six rebounds, two assists, and one steal.
Tykera Carter put up seven points on 42.8-percent shooting, pulled down seven rebounds and scrambled for three thefts.
Erin Storck was one rebound shy of matching her career-high on the glass (8 rebounds) while scoring four points and earning a pair of steals.
- The 29.5-percent shooting by SHU is the lowest performance by the Pioneers in a win.
- SHU is 21-16 against LIU Brooklyn all time and is 7-4 in the past five seasons.
- Today's victory ends a three-game SHU drought.
The Pioneers wrap up January play and their three-game road trip Monday, January 29 at St. Francis Brooklyn. The Terriers open their doors at 7:00 p.m.