After 29 games, Marist women’s basketball remains difficult to figure out.
Coming off its best win in quite some time at Iona, the Red Foxes regressed with a 66-63 overtime loss at Rider in the final regular season game of Brian Giorgis’ tenure.
Marist led for much of the game but was unable to parlay the momentum from Thursday’s win at Iona into a second consecutive victory.
Late in regulation, the teams exchanged turnovers before a foul on Catie Cunningham allowed the Broncs to go ahead 55-54 from the charity stripe with 35 seconds left.
On Marist’s next possession, Jackie Piddock turned the ball over on an errant entry pass to Zaria Shazer, forcing the Red Foxes into fouling.
Rider’s Amanda Mobley split a pair from the foul line, making it 56-54.
After a timeout, the Red Foxes had one last chance to tie or win the game. The ball eventually made its way to Kiara Fisher, who drove and scored to tie it at 56 with less than three seconds left.
Rider’s attempt at a game-winner rolled off the rim to send it to overtime.
Shazer gave Marist a 58-56 edge with a running layup a minute-and-a-half into the overtime period but the Broncs responded with a triple on the next possession.
Rider consolidated its lead with a three-point play from Mikayla Firebaugh to make it 62-58 with under two minutes left.
The Broncs got the lead up to 66-60 before Fisher hit a desperation three with just over 30 seconds left in overtime.
The Red Foxes were able to force a steal on the subsequent Rider possession but Kendall Krick and Fisher missed potential game-tying attempts, giving the home team the win.
The insertion of Cunningham and Morgan Tompkins into the starting lineup was the catalyst for Thursday’s win, but they didn’t have the same impact on Saturday.
They only combined for four points, with Tompkins playing just eight minutes and failing to score.
Shazer once again paced the Red Foxes with a game-high 25 on 10-of-20 shooting. Fisher finished with 14 and was the only other Marist player in double figures.
The Red Foxes (12-17, 8-12 in the MAAC) shot 37 percent from the field and just 4-for-17 from three.
Rider shot 38 percent from the field and made 5 of its 22 attempts from deep.
Victoria Toomey had 19 to lead the Broncs.
After a slow start, the Red Foxes began to work their way into the game. Julianna Bonilla hit a three early in the second quarter to make it 16-11 and scoring from Fisher and Shazer stretched the lead to 26-15 with 5:11 left in the half.
Marist would cool off from the field as the half came to a close, but a Krick jumper pushed the advantage back up to 30-23 heading into the locker room.
After a Shazer score to begin the second half, the Red Foxes continued to struggle on the offensive end. The Broncs drew to within 32-29 before both teams went on lengthy droughts.
Shazer eventually took the lid off the basket for Marist to end a four-minute drought, and after the teams traded three-point plays, scoring from Piddock and Sam Bailey helped the Red Foxes take a 42-36 lead into the fourth.
The Red Foxes led for most of the game but saw their advantage reduced to a single point after Raphaela Toussaint converted a three-point play to cut the lead to 44-43 with 7:03 left.
Rider re-took the lead at 47-46 after Victoria scored a putback layup with 4:53 remaining, capping an 11-4 run and forcing a Marist timeout.
After a Red Foxes’ turnover, the Broncs capitalized with a three from Jessika Schiffer to make it a four-point advantage.
Fisher answered with a three-point play to make it 50-49 and Marist re-took the lead after Shazer hit a pair from the foul line to make it 54-53 with 1:47 remaining.
Marist and Rider will run it back on Tuesday in Atlantic City in the 7-10 game. Tip-off is scheduled for approximately 12:30 p.m.
The Red Foxes will hope the old adage about beating a team three times in a season proves true in the MAAC Tournament.
Edited by Ricardo Martinez
Photo from Marist Athletics