The Monmouth University women’s basketball team closed out their inaugural CAA regular season on a high note, defeating visitors Stony Brook 72-71 on a last-second Bri Tinsley bucket.
The Hawks’ first season in the CAA conference was full of ups and downs. The win over Stony Brook gave them a 14-15 overall record and a 9-9 record within the CAA.
Prior to the game, Monmouth honored graduate students Lovin Marsicano, Bri Tinsley, Jen Louro, and Lucy Thomas, along with their senior managers. Each of the four players, playing in their last ever collegiate regular season games, started this game for Monmouth, and contributed in varying ways whilst getting a wealth of playing time.
The frontcourt duo of Mariscano and Thomas combined for 28 points, with each firing home 14 points. Thomas added seven rebounds, two blocks, two assists, and was able to convert her only three-point attempt. Marsicano took the role of the sharpshooter, making four out of her five three-point attempts which accounted for 12 of her 14 points.
Meanwhile, the Hawks’ backcourt combination of Louro and Tinsley combined for 15 points. Tinsley added nine, with her last two being enough to send her and her teammates off into the sunset with one last memorable win on their home court. Louro made two shots from deep and snatched up four defensive rebounds. Louro, Marsicano, and the rest of the Hawks were excellent from range yet again, with the team tying their season-high of 11 three-pointers, the fourth time they’ve done so this year.
Monmouth dominated much of the game, leading at halftime and outscoring their opponents in each of the first three quarters. Stony Brook, however, switched gears in the fourth quarter and heavily swayed the momentum, outscoring Monmouth 27-15 in the final frame. After the Hawks had started off with 10 of the first 18 points scored in the quarter, Stony Brook raced back with a 16-0 run to erase almost all of the Hawks’ hard work to that point and tie the game.
Thomas reclaimed the lead with under a minute to go before Stony Brook inched back in front with a long range basket. A heads-up timeout from Head Coach Ginny Boggess allowed the Hawks to execute a set play, giving Tinsley the chance to deposit the game-winning layup with 5.8 ticks left on the clock.
Stony Brook would of course have one more chance to run an inbounds play and try to get a shot up, but Monmouth’s disciplined defense prevented their opponents from doing so, thus sealing the win and securing the seventh seed in the upcoming CAA tournament.
Every single point countedfor the Hawks in this one, and Coach Boggess was over the moon with the final result. “I am so happy we could send our seniors off with a win tonight in front of an electric crowd. I’ve been saying all these close games will pay off and it did tonight, our execution and togetherness down the stretch was the difference. I hope to see everyone at Towson for the tournament.”
The Lady Hawks will open their CAA tournament run against the College of Charleston, who are the 10th seed, on Thursday, March 9.