Hawks Lose Lead Late to Quinnipiac

The Women’s Basketball team led Quinnipiac on Friday night for most of first 32 minutes of the game. However, the Bobcats fired past the blue white by outscoring them 25-5 in the last eight minutes of the game to beat the Hawks by final score of 83-67.

With the loss, MU fell to 6-19 overall, with a 5-9 MAAC record, while Quinnipiac improved to 14-9 on the season, including a 9-4 record in the MAAC.

Senior forward Chevannah Paalvast led the way for the Hawks, as she tied her season high 23 points. Freshman guard Mia Hopkins contributed nine points and five rebounds, while junior forward Sara English had six points, and a game-high 11 rebounds.

Samantha Guastella led the Bobcats with a game-high 24 points, while Jasmine Martin scored 16 points. Brittany McQuain chipped in with a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds, and Gillian Abshire dished out a game-high 10 assists.

The game began with the Bobcats jumping ahead 6-0 after hitting back to back three’s. However, the blue and white scored the next seven points, five of them coming from Paalvast, take the lead. After a Quinnipiac basket kept the game within a point at 17-16 the Hawks went on a 7-0 run to extend their lead to eight points with 9:31 remaining in the first half.

The Bobcats slowly decreased MU’s lead to go into halftime tied at 35 a piece off of a three-pointer from Adily Martucci from the corner with 29 seconds left.

The Hawks began the second half scoring eight of the first ten points to retake the lead 43-37. The lead stayed steady at six up until the 15:05 mark when the Bobcats began to cut into it.

Quinnipiac took its first lead of the game since the five minute mark when Abshire hit a three with 11:52 remaining. The Hawks regained the lead when Paalvast converted a three-point lay in with 10:20 left to play.

But the Bobcats battled right back, and retook the lead on Guastella’s three-pointer at the 7:50 mark and they would not trail again. That basket sparked a 14-2 run, right before the Hawks brought it back to within seven. The 25-5 run at the end of the game sealed it for Quinnipiac.

“I was really happy with our first half. I was not happy at all with the second half,” said Monmouth Head Coach Jenny Palmateer. “There were times when we were just really disorganized and very undisciplined on both ends of the floor. We really weren’t communicating with each other on the defensive end and doing random things on the offensive end at critical times. That definitely wasn’t our best basketball in the second half. We’re a team that has to be a whole lot more disciplined on both ends of the floor if we’re going to win games.”

The blue and white outshot the Bobcats, 42.6 percent (29-68) to 40.3 percent (27-67) from the floor. MU also out-rebounded Quinnipiac, 44-37. The Bobcats held an edge of 35.3 percent (12-34) to 27.3 percent (3-11) edge from beyond the arc. Quinnipiac also had an advantage of 89.5 percent (17-19) to 60.0 percent (6-10) from the free-throw line. The Bobcats turned 16 Monmouth turnovers into a 17-6 edge in points off turnovers. Quinnipiac committed eight turnovers on the night.

The Hawks face a tough challenge when they return to action on Friday, Feb. 14, as they travel to Iona to take on the Gaels. Iona only has three losses the entire season (20-3) and has just one lass in MAAC conference play (13-1). In addition, the Gaels have lost just once at home, and are yet to lose to a MAAC opponent on their home court. The game is sceduled for 4:30pm, and is the first in a men’s and women’s double header between the two schools.

PHOTO COURTESY of Scott Narder