Marist utilized a stifling defense and tremendous three-point shooting to defeat Manhattan 74-53 on Play4Kay night.
The Lady Red Foxes donned their pink uniforms on a night where breast cancer survivors were honored in a halftime ceremony. Marist completed a season sweep of the Jaspers in a game that was defined by a 22-2 Red Fox run that stretched beyond 13 minutes. Brian Giorgis improved his career record to 34-7 against Manhattan and Rebekah Hand moved into tenth all-time on the program assist list.
“It was a terrific win against a great team,” said Giorgis. “I thought we played some great team defense in the second and third quarters and offensively we had great balance.”
Marist, sitting at 17-4 overall and 10-2 in the MAAC, got double-figure scoring from four players. Rebekah Hand had a game-high 14 points on five-of-12 shooting and Alana Gilmer added 12 points of her own. Sarah Barcello, coming off of an injury, also had 12 on four made threes in her first action since January 16th vs. Rider. Willow Duffell finished with a double-double, putting up 11 points and 10 rebounds along with a whopping plus-minus of 30.
“She keeps getting better and better,” Giorgis said of Duffell. “I get on her case more than anybody. She’s our 4.0 (GPA) kid but she likes to show me she’s human but she played great tonight.”
Manhattan, currently at 9-13 overall and 6-7 in conference, got a team-high 13 points from Jan Hoier. Sini Makela was the only other Jasper in double-digits with 12.
Marist led 20-16 after ten minutes thanks in part to accurate marksmanship from beyond the arc. Barcello, who was not hesitant to shoot, drained two early triples with Hand equaling her mark. Her sister Hannah, who has seen a recent uptick in minutes, finished the quarter with a buzzer-beating layup off a full-court pass from Grace Vander Weide.
“I always feel comfortable playing with my teammates,” said Barcello in her return from injury. “It felt good to be back out there.”
After Molly Smith drained a three to make it 23-16, Manhattan’s Courtney Warley made a layup at the 8:41 mark of the second quarter, marking the first and last Jasper score of the quarter. As the Red Foxes defense suffocated their New York foe, the offense went about gaining separation. Gilmer hit a jumper to make it 29-18 and finished with two more scores to give her team a 33-18 advantage going into the break.
The Manhattan scoring drought carried into the first few minutes of the second half and Marist continued to punish their offensively inept opponent. Barcello hit another three and Duffell converted an easy layup to inflate the score to 40-18 before the Jaspers finally saw an Emily LaPointe layup go down at the 7:42 mark of the third. The drought lasted a second short of 11 minutes and saw the Red Foxes score 17 unanswered.
Despite Manhattan’s rediscovery of an offense, the Marist lead continued to grow. Allie Best hit a three that stretched the lead to 52-28 and Barcello hit her fourth three to make it 58-31 heading into the final ten minutes.
The fun continued as reserves Trinasia Kennedy and Kendall Krick drained threes of their own. In a similar fashion to their previous meeting against Iona, the Lady Red Foxes saw their lead hit 30 when Hannah Hand hit two free throws to make it 74-44. The Jaspers ended on a 9-0 run as the Marist reserves got in on the fun and the crowd of nearly 2,000 rose in appreciation of their team.
The Red Foxes turned in a 27-57 (47 percent) effort from the floor. Marist finished a scorching 13-for-28 from beyond the arc, tying the season-high set against Canisius. Ball movement was once again a strength as Marist finished with 22 assists. Manhattan was held to just 21-of-59 shooting on the night. They were held to five-of-18 from beyond the arc and committed 13 turnovers against just eight assists.
The Red Foxes will have three games next week, beginning with a crucial rematch against
Rider on Tuesday. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.
“We’re going to take everything one game at a time,” said Giorgis.
Edited by David Connelly