NEW LONDON, Conn. - The University of Saint Joseph (USJ) was outscored, 43-19, in the second half en route to a, 75-48, setback to the Mitchell College (MC) Mariners on the road Thursday night in exhibition women's basketball action inside the Yarnall Athletic Center. The Mariners got revenge on their home court after the Blue Jays were triumphant, 69-66, just five days prior in West Hartford in USJ's season opener.
The Mariners outscored the Blue Jays 21-13 in the third quarter and 22-6 in the fourth en route to the win. Mitchell's Sam McKenna (Millbrook, N.Y.) was on fire from beyond the arc and led all scorers with 21 points (8-20 FG, 5-11 3FG), while also grabbing seven rebounds. Jermia Dumas (Stratford, Conn.) came off the bench to chip in 17 points for MC, while Alexia Watson (Stamford, Conn.) added 15 points and six rebounds and Le'Sandra Turner (New Rochelle, N.Y.) finished with game highs of eight rebounds and eight assists.
Sophomore transfer Taylor Verboven (Columbia, Conn.) had another solid game to start her career with the Blue Jays and led USJ with 16 points (5-8 FG, 1-2 3FG, 5-6 FT) in 33 minutes of floor time. Sophomore Amanda Fudge (Middletown, Conn.), also a transfer into the program this season, chipped in with nine points, while junior Katelyn Vazquez (Manchester, Conn.) had six points and seven rebounds.
Neither team led by more than four in the opening quarter as both offenses were slow out of the gate. The Blue Jays took a slim 15-14 advantage into the second stanza and got back-to-back buckets from junior Cheyenne-Mone Smith (Wethersfield, Conn.) and freshman Jordan Ouellette (Bristol, Conn.) to take their biggest lead of the night at 19-14.
Mitchell stayed within striking distance throughout and ultimately took the lead behind an 11-3 run to close the final three minutes of the first half. Dumas and Turner accounted for all of the points for Mitchell during the run, scoring seven and four, respectively. Turner beat the halftime buzzer with a pull-up jumper at the right elbow to make it 32-29 at the break and Mitchell would never trail again in the contest.
Mitchell quickly added to their halftime margin to start the third quarter. McKenna made a pair of threes early in the period to bump the lead to 38-31, and then a quick 10-0 run later in the quarter expanded the Mariners to 48-35 with 4:18 left in the third. After a layup by Verboven cut USJ's deficit back to single digits, Mitchell closed the quarter with back-to-back layups by Watson and McKenna to expand the lead to 53-42 heading to the fourth.
The Mariners led by 10 with 5:59 remaining and finished the game with 17 unanswered points to seal the victory.
Score: Saint Joseph 48, Mitchell 75
Location: Yarnall Athletic Center | New London, Conn.
COACH QUOTE [Wendy Davis on tonight's performance]
"Unfortunately, we got outworked and outhustled by a good Mitchell team tonight. A loss isn't failure as long as you learn something from it. Hopefully we learn something from tonight and put on a better display of basketball on Saturday."
NUMBER TO KNOW
26 – The Blue Jays turned in over 23 times tonight and Mitchell capitalized on those USJ's mistakes, scoring 26 points off USJ turnovers.
- Mitchell once again controlled USJ on the glass and held a 49-36 rebounding advantage. In the two-game series, the Mariners were a toal of plus-33 on the boards.
- The Mariners took 18 more shots than the Blue Jays in the contest. MC was plus-eight on the offensive glass and plus-six in turnovers.
- Mitchell shot 39.4% (28-71) from the floor and 37.5% (9-24) from three, while USJ was 30.2% (16-53) from the field and 25.0% (2-8) from distance.
- Both teams connected at a 66.7% clip from the free throw line.
The Blue Jays will have a quick turnaround as they are set to host New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) opponent Connecticut College this Saturday. Tipoff between the Blue Jays and Camels is scheduled for 11:00 a.m.
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