Women's Basketball - Tue, Feb. 3, 2009
CHICAGO - Behind 14 points, 13 rebounds, seven assists and four steals by sophomore guard Shalonda Young (Chicago, Ill./Crane Tech), No. 8 ranked Saint Xavier University used a strong second half to pull away for an 84-38 win over Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) foe Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) in NAIA women's basketball action Tuesday night at the Shannon Center in Chicago. The win gives SXU (19-3 overall/5-0 CCAC) a 10-game win streak, its longest stretch without a loss since the 2006-07 season when the team won 14 straight games and finished the season at 29-3 overall.
All 12 Cougar players on the active roster scored at least three points in Tuesday's ballgame. Senior forward Abiola Amure (Chicago, Ill./St. Scholastica) also finished with 14 points to help lead Saint Xavier, while sophomore point guard Alex Barone (Joliet, Ill./Marian Catholic) scored in double figures with 10 points in addition to her four assists and game-best six steals. Junior forward Erin Hannemann (Homer Glen, Ill./Providence Catholic) was tough as well posting eight points and 11 rebounds. Freshman forward Brittany Jones (Tinley Park, Ill./Andrew) made the most of her 12 minutes of playing time by pulling down nine rebounds. SXU shot 43 percent (19-for-44) from the field in the second half to score 53 points after the break.
The Cougars got off to a hot start jumping out to a 13-2 lead in the first five minutes of play behind big baskets by Barone and Young. SXU built its lead to 14 points, 22-8, at the 10-minute mark of the half before the Scarlet Hawks were able to start a run of their own and cut the lead to eight, 25-17, with five minutes to play before halftime. SXU pushed the lead back up to 14, 31-17, before IIT closed out the half with an 8-0 run and trailed by six, 31-25, at halftime. Saint Xavier dominated the second half with the defense picking it up a notch and recording 15 steals, which helped cause 21 second-half turnovers by the Scarlet Hawks. Illinois Tech also had trouble getting shots off due to the turnovers and hit just 19 percent (4-for-21) of their second half field goal attempts. The Cougars scored 40 of their 84 points off of IIT turnovers Tuesday.
Saint Xavier (19-3 overall/5-0 CCAC) heads to Gentile Center in Chicago on Saturday, February 7, to take on CCAC foe Robert Morris College (Ill.). The game is scheduled for a 5:30 p.m. start.