Undermanned and out-hustled in the final seconds, Marist dropped its fourth straight game, losing a 53-50 heartbreaker at Lafayette on Wednesday night.
Kiara Fisher tied the game at 50 with a layup with 10 seconds left. The Leopards drove down the floor, intent to get a shot off right away. Lafayette’s Jess Booth drew a foul on Emma Wax and went to the line with two chances to put her team ahead. Booth missed both shots, but the Red Foxes could not corral the rebound.
Zaria Shazer was called for a foul on Makaila Wilson with three seconds left. Wilson made the first and missed the second. Surely, the Red Foxes would grab this rebound. They couldn’t. Wilson went back to the line and sunk the freebies to make it a three-point game with one-and-a-half seconds left.
Marist (2-5) had a chance to tie but didn’t even get a shot up. In a cruel twist, the Red Foxes easily outrebounded the Leopards 47-35, but could not bring down the ball when it mattered most.
Marist only had eight players dressed for the game, as Sarah Barcello, Kendall Krick, and Julianna Bonilla did not make the trip. Barcello continues to recover from off-season surgery, while Krick and Bonilla were held out because of COVID-19 protocols. Trinasia Kennedy and Anabel Ellison made the trip but did not play.
Ellison sported a boot on her right foot after spraining her right ankle in Sunday’s game. She is expected to miss the next few weeks. Kennedy seems to be trending toward a return in the next couple of games.
With four guards out of the lineup, someone needed to step up. Freshman Siobhan Boylan, the Pennsylvania native, earned her first career start and answered the call with 13 points on three-of-five shooting from deep in 36 minutes.
Shazer led the Red Foxes with 14 points and 19 rebounds, including eight on the offensive glass. It was her fourth double-double of the year.
Fisher got into double-digits for the first time since November 14, finishing with 12 points. The bad news, she needed 20 shot attempts to get there.
Every Marist starter played at least 30 minutes and Brian Giorgis, who usually deploys a deep bench, was forced into using only seven players. McKenna Rife was the only available player who failed to see action.
The Red Foxes started a bone-chilling nine-of-44 (21 percent) from the floor. Despite not being able to make a shot, they only found themselves down 38-31 after three quarters.
The ball finally started going through the hoop in the fourth quarter, as Marist chipped away at the deficit. Boylan knotted things at 44 with a three with four minutes left in the game. Lafayette responded with a three-point play to retake the lead.
Fisher scored to cut it to 49-48 with 75 seconds left, but the Red Foxes could not get over the hump. For the second straight game, Marist could not execute as well as their opponents in the clutch.
The Red Foxes finished 18-for-61 (30 percent) from the field and a frigid four-of-19 from deep. They haven’t shot above 40 percent from the floor in over two weeks. They shot 10-of-13 from the foul line and grabbed 17 offensive rebounds, only parlaying them into eight second-chance points.
Lafayette (2-5) shot 35 percent on the night, faring even worse from deep than the Red Foxes. Booth had a game-high 18 points on six-of-ten shooting.
Giorgis and company have to hope that help is on the way sometime soon. The next few will be even tougher sledding if there are only eight players available.
Marist returns home to face Columbia on Sunday afternoon. Tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m. at McCann.
Edited by Connor Kurpat
Photo from Marist Athletics