Pioneers Hang on for 57-53 win at Binghamton

Nov. 14, 2006

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BINGHAMTON, N.Y. (November 14, 2006) - The Sacred Heart Pioneers led by as many as 21 points Tuesday night at Binghamton but needed to withstand a late Bearcat charge to come away with a 57-54 win in non-conference play. Seniors Jasmine Walker (Amityville, NY) and Amanda Pape (Stamford, CT) each scored double figures with 15 and 12, respectively, to give the Pioneers their first win of the young season.

Heading into first media timeout of the first half, both teams struggled looking for some offensive rhythm with sophomore Kaitlin Sowkinski (Hopkinton, RI) putting home a pair of lay-up for the only SHU points.

The Bearcats lead 10-8 at the 12:07 mark but went stone cold, missing seven-straight shots and going scoreless over the next six minutes. Meanwhile, the Pioneers capitalized, using a 12-0 run to go up 20-10 with 6:45 left. A back-door lay-up followed by an offensive put back by freshman Lindsey Gibson (Mechanicville, NY) got things started and Walker finished if off with a three-point play.

SHU used another quick spurt fueled by a Pape to sophomore Liz Gruber (Staten Island, NY) fast break hoop and a dribble drive by junior Kerri Burke (Saugus, MA) who dumped it off to Walker for the lay-in to give the Pioneers a 26-16 lead just before the final media timeout of the half.

From there, Binghamton hit another offensive rut, going scoreless over the last 4:16 while SHU used the last 1:22 to run off another 8-0 run. Burke canned a jumper, buried a three and Gruber capped it with a three-point play to go into the half leading 34-16. SHU forced 13 BU turnovers in the half while holding the Bearcats to just 19.2% (5-26) shooting.

The Pioneers built their lead to 21 in the early stages of the second half when the Bearcats began their climb back. BU sliced the lead down to 10, 43-33, at the 12:05 mark using an 11-0 run capped by a three from Shea Kenny. The Pioneers seemed to weather the storm and outscored Binghamton 8-3 over the next three and a half minutes to push their lead back to 51-36 with just under eight minutes left.

Binghamton kept coming and again put together another run, this time 10-0 that cut the Pioneer lead all the way down to five, 51-46, with four minutes left. BU took full advantage of four SHU turnovers on the run and went to the foul line six times. A missed three pointer by Burke sent a long rebound out and Rebecka Lindgren got ahead of the field for a lay-up that would have cut the lead to three, but Burke hustled back and striped the ball on her way up to stop the threat.

A pair of Pape free throws and a steal at the other end by the senior captain turned into a Walker lay-up to quickly shoot the lead back to nine, 55-46, with 2:35 left. Yet another Bearcat run was in store as a pair of free throws and a jumper by Kenny cut the lead to six, 55-49. Walker put in a lay-up with 1:59 left to go up 57-51 but a baseline jumper from Laura Sario got the Bearcats as close as they could come at 57-53 with just over a minute left. BU missed three shots in the final minute and the Pioneers snuck away with a 57-53 win.

The Pioneers were outscored 37-23 in the second half and were out rebounded 44-33 on the night. SHU forced 22 total turnovers but committed 12 of their 18 in the final 20 minutes of action.

Burke finished with nine points, five assists and four steals in the win. Sowinski had seven points and turned away three Bearcat shots.

SHU, 1-1 in the early going, returns home this Friday night to host La Salle at 7:00 pm.