Rensselaer tops Saints women's basketball, 54-50
Sunday, December 2, 2018 - 8:07 am

Chelsea Van Tassel and Annabella Pugliese scored nine points and grabbed three rebounds each, but a strong second half powered the Rensselaer Engineers to a 54-50 win over the St. Lawrence University women's basketball team in Liberty League play on Saturday afternoon at Burkman Gymnasium.

Second to Van Tassel and Pugliese, Dylan Watkiss added seven points each, while Katie Frederick recorded six points, a team-best 10 rebounds, grabbed four steals and posted five blocks for the Scarlet and Brown. Meghan O'Connor also added six points for the Saints.

After five ties in the first quarter, the Engineers' Lyndsey Stone gave Rensselaer a 16-13 lead after ten minutes of play.

The Engineers maintained a slight lead throughout the second quarter, but a last second layup from Pugliese tied the game at 23 just before halftime. At the half, St. Lawrence shot 11-for-22 from the floor for 50 percent to the Engineers 29 percent (9-for-31).

In the fourth quarter, Watkiss landed a huge 3-pointer for the Saints, closing the gap to two points, but Elizabeth Eckhardt finished with a jumper for Rensselaer.

The Engineers nearly doubled their first half score in the third quarter alone and outscored the Saints 31-27 in the second half to take home the win.

"We competed today and really battled," said head coach Dan Roiger. "But made many mistakes that came back to haunt us. Turnovers continue to be our Achilles heel, and this was our worst rebounding game in two years. That resulted in them getting 20 more shots than us, they made two more buckets and that was the spread. Those twenty extra shots were too much for us to overcome."

"Every game I see improvement in this team," Roiger continued. "Today our fast break improved and we started to get some concepts down within our offense. There is a lot to teach right now, our players continue to work hard and want to learn, and that's all we are asking for. They will continue to grow as they gain experience."

LaKissa Martin led the Engineers with 19 points (7-for-18), while Brielle Sharry recorded 12 points (5-for-9) and grabbed a team-high nine rebounds. Martin also recorded two steals, while Stone posted two blocks for Rensselaer.

Despite the result, St. Lawrence shot 42 percent from the floor and 27 percent from the arc, compared to Rensselaer's 32 percent and 22 percent, respectively.

With the loss, the Saints fell to 3-3 on the season and 1-1 in conference play, while Rensselaer improved to 6-2 and 1-1.

St. Lawrence will host Clarkson on Tuesday, December 4 at 5 p.m.