Bill Ziskin

Women’s Basketball Holds On To Beat Siena In Overtime 88-86

UAlbany Sports Information   11-27-2016

ALBANY, N.Y. - For the first time in history, the University at Albany women’s basketball program (3-3) hosted crosstown rival Siena (1-3) in the Albany Cup at SEFCU Arena.  After falling behind in the first and third quarters, the Great Danes battled back to force overtime and ultimately defeat the Saints 88-86.  It was UAlbany’s second consecutive overtime game, after losing in double overtime at Fordham last week, and the seventh year in a row the Albany Cup stays with UAlbany.

“It is really good to learn from a win,” said head coach Joanna Bernabei-McNamee. “There is a lot we have to learn from this game, but it is great to get an overtime win under our belt.  To know when push comes to shove in overtime, we can take care of the ball and take care of business.”

Siena held a 22-14 lead at the close of the first quarter.  The Saints opened the game on an 8-1 run before UAlbany made its first field goal.  UAlbany shored up its defense in the second quarter, holding Siena to only 9 points.  The Great Danes led at halftime 34-31.  Jessica Féquière led UAlbany with 10 points, and the team shot 54.2% from the floor.  Siena, who shot 60.0% in the first quarter, was held to just 14.3 in the second quarter.

 The second half played out similarly to the first, with Siena ending the third quarter on a 13-0 run to take a 58-51 lead.  Siena shot 11-12 in the quarter.  The Great Danes clawed back in the fourth quarter, sending the game into overtime tied at 73.  UAlbany trailed by as many as nine points in the fourth, before slowly inching closer and cutting in to the Saints’ lead.  With just over four minutes left, the Danes had cut the lead to three, but Siena pulled away to open up an eight-point lead with just over two minutes remaining in the game.  UAlbany tied the game with eight seconds left with a pair of free throws from Imani Tate, capping off an 11-3 run.

The Great Danes quickly took the lead in overtime, but never led by more than three points.  Siena recaptured the lead with just under three minutes remaining, before Mackenzie Trpcic hit a three pointer, giving UAlbany a lead it wouldn’t relinquish.  The two teams traded points for the final two and a half minutes, ultimately settling at 88-86 in favor of UAlbany.

Four great Danes scored in double figures.  Tate led the way with 24, followed by Féquière with 19, Bailey Hixson with 16, and Tiana-Jo Carter with 10.  Féquière led the team with 11 rebounds, and Tate had six assists.  UAlbany shot 50.0% for the game, and held the advantage over Siena in points in the paint, second chance points, and bench points.

Tonight’s game was part one of a double header with the men’s team, who were also hosting Siena.

“It was exciting, I wish we could get that crowd every game,” said Coach Mac.  “I believe UAlbany women’s basketball is going to be really fun to watch, and I would love to get those people in the stands.  It was real exciting to see all those people cheering in the stands.”

Next, UAlbany will visit St. John’s on Wednesday, November 30 at 7:00 p.m.

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