Henry and Richards combine for 35 points as UAlbany Defeats Canisius in Beach Classic Win


LONG BEACH, CALIF. -- California native Ebone Henry continued her strong homecoming as the University at Albany women's basketball team triumphed over Canisius in the third place game of the Long Beach Classic, 67-47.  Coming off a career-high 29 points the night before, the senior guard led all scorers with 20 points. The Great Danes finished the tournament 1-1 and defeated the Griffs for the second time this season.

After a 6-6 start, UAlbany went on a 14-3 run, holding Canisius scoreless for nearly five minutes. Three straight buckets by freshman Shreesha Richards gave the Great Danes an early double-digit lead, 20-9, with 9:58 remaining in the first half.

The Great Danes continued to add to their lead. With 4:13 to go in the first, UAlbany extended their advantage to 17, 30-13. As Canisius attempted to chip away with a five-point run of their own, back-to-back three's by Henry and guard Margarita Rosario put the margin back to 16, 38-22, at half.

UAlbany controlled both the boards and ball through 20 minutes. They outrebounded the Griffs 23-14 and had nine steals to Canisius' 0. Henry continued on her scoring spree, ending the first half with a game-high 13 points. 

Another early run by the Great Danes built their lead into the second half. UAlbany went on a 12-2 run, blowing the game open, 53-31 with 14:04 to go. Richards continued to add to her point total with six points over the span.

Richards and Henry led UAlbany to the final buzzer as they rolled over Canisius down the stretch, winning 67-47. The two combined for 35 points. Richards scored 15 points with a career-high seven steals. 

The Great Danes dominated nearly every statistical category. These included steals: 14-3, turnovers: 19-12, and rebounds: 46-36. They shot 76.5 percent (13-17) from the free throw line and 39.1 percent from the field (25-64).

"This was a great tournament for Ebone, coming home to California," said UAlbany head coach Katie Abrahamson-Henderson, who has guided the Great Danes to their best-ever Division I start. "She played hard. I thought Ebone, Shereesha [Richards] and Julie [Forster] took over this game. Overall, we leave Long Beach feeling strong."

Tonight concluded the Great Danes non-conference schedule for 2012-13. They will enjoy the holiday break before getting back to action Jan. 2 against America East opponent UMBC. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. at RAC Arena.