College of St. Joseph's women's basketball team plays their first contest of 2018 on Wednesday, Jan. 10 against the SUNY Delhi Broncos. The game will be held at Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vt. at 1 p.m.
The Fighting Saints are 4-5 this season, including 0-2 in Northeast Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play. The Broncos are 11-4 overall and 2-2 in NIAC play.
Delhi handed CSJ a conference loss on Dec. 5. Daija Black led the Saints with 19 points in the 86-83 loss, and freshman Arielys Rodriguez was close behind her with 18. Alexius Brooks put up a double-double by way of 12 points and 11 rebounds, and Dymond Collins netted 11 points. Three Delhi players scored over 20 points: Samiaya Salley (24), Camryn McDonald (21), and Kiera Holland (21). McDonald also recorded a game-high 18 rebounds.
The Broncos took a 40-28 lead into halftime and a 66-53 advantage after three quarters. The Lady Saints trailed by as much as 18 points in the final quarter, but were able to make the game a nail-biter over the span of six minutes.
With 8:21 to go in the game, CSJ trailed 74-56. Rodriguez netted a 3-pointer, Black scored a layup and Collins registered a free throw before Holland interrupted the CSJ scoring spurt with a layup. The score stood 76-62 with seven minutes to play.
Collins converted a 3-pointer and NaKeeya Goodman-Boddie scored a jump shot for the Saints in the next minute. Salley made a layup for Delhi between the CSJ scores. The Fighting Saints called a timeout, trailing 78-67 with six minutes on the scoreboard.
Rodriguez made a layup after the break, only to be matched a layup by the Broncos' Katie Herba. Next, McDonald went 1-for-2 from the foul line with 5:18 on the clock, putting Delhi ahead 81-69. Thirty seconds later, Madison Akins stole the ball and finished a breakaway layup.
Akins' effort sparked a 6-0 run by the Lady Saints. Rodriguez, Daija Black and Crisalida Chaplin each scored layups to cut CSJ's deficit to four, 81-77, with just 2:36 left in the game. The next minute-and-a-half went by scoreless, with both teams missing free throws. Herba netted a key jump shot for Delhi with 1:01 on the clock, extending their lead 83-77.
Chaplin collected an offensive rebound on the Saints' next possession and put the ball back up for a layup twenty seconds later, putting CSJ back within four points. Salley went 1-for-2 from the foul line on the other end of the court, making the score 84-79 in favor of the home team with thirty seconds to play.
Chaplin then mimicked her play from seconds earlier and scored her sixth point in two minutes, rekindling CSJ's chances for a comeback victory. With the score at 84-81 and time at :23, the Broncos called a timeout. CSJ immediately fouled after the break with the intentions of stopping the time from ticking away.
Herba converted both of her foul shots to extend Delhi's lead to five. The Fighting Saints pushed the ball back into their offensive end, and Black drove directly to the basket for a layup with just 14 seconds to play. This time, CSJ called a timeout and set up a press. The Lady Saints' defense forced a Delhi turnover, preventing the home team from passing the ball inbound within five seconds.
With six seconds left and the last possession of the contest, the Fighting Saints were able to get off a 3-point shot in a final effort to send the game into overtime. However, the shot was off the mark and time expired with score at 86-83 in favor of the Broncos.
CSJ hopes to pick up their first win of 2018 in the rematch versus Delhi, which will be held at Green Mountain College on Jan. 10 at 1 p.m.