Recap written by Eric Getzoff.
KINGS POINT, N.Y. (Dec. 11, 2018) – Make it seven-in-a-row for the USMMA women's basketball team. The Mariners handily defeated the visiting York College Cardinals in a non-conference game Tuesday night at the Liebertz Gymnasium by the final score of 64-39. Merchant Marine remains perfect at 7-0, while the Cardinals drop to 1-7 on the loss.
Freshman Lauren Hunter (Tinley Park, Ill.) was dominant from the start for the Mariners, scoring eight points in the first quarter on her way to a 22-point, 11-rebound night. Hunter finished the night shooting 10-for-17 from the field.
Junior Shelby Peters (El Dorado, Hills, Calif.) was the second-leading scorer for the Mariners with eight points on 4-for-9 shooting, while also adding 11 rebounds of her own. Junior Kaleigh D'Arcy (White Plains, N.Y.) scored seven points to go along with four boards and six assists, and four other players scored six points each for the Mariners – junior Taylor Hightower (White Plains, Md.), sophomore Kiana Vega (El Paso, Texas) and freshmen Julia Dahlke (San Diego, Calif.) and Cadee Fromm (Enid, Okla.).
Sophomore Alina Montenegro (West Palm Beach, Fla.) grabbed five rebounds in less than seven minutes of action.
The Mariners got out to a 3-0 lead but fell behind 5-3 when freshman Keyla Cabrera hit a jumper followed by a 3-pointer from senior Sheahna Roscher at 8:16. The Mariners then rattled off eight-straight points to take an 11-5 lead at 5:27 and led 19-11 after the first quarter.
The second quarter is when the Mariners took firm control of the game. USMMA held York scoreless over a four-minute stretch between the end of the first quarter and beginning of the second quarter and forced another scoreless streak that lasted almost four minutes (3.54) from 8:40 to 4:46. Over that time, the Mariners increased their lead to 29-16 and ended the fourth quarter on a 10-0 run.
All ten points of that run were spread out between five players - two each by Vega, Hunter, Peters, D'Arcy (two free throws) and Hightower. The Mariners outscored the Cardinals 20-5 during the second quarter and led 39-16 at the half.
The Mariners continued their dominant defensive play in the second half, carrying a 4:46 scoreless streak into the half and extended it over four minutes until York's first basket at 6:56. By that time, the Mariners already scored six points to open the frame. Their third quarter was just as good as the second for Merchant Marine, outscoring York 16-6 to take a commanding 55-22 lead into the fourth quarter.
Vega's jump shot at 8:45 of the fourth quarter gave the Mariners their largest lead of the game, 57-22. The Cardinals would outscore the Mariners 17-7 over the remainder of the game.
For York, Roscher scored ten points on 3-for-4 three-point shooting, freshman Ellma Hodzic added eight points on six rebounds and Cabrera poured in six for the Cardinals.
Merchant Marine will look for its eighth-straight win to start the season this Thursday night, Dec. 13, in a Skyline Conference game against Yeshiva University at Baruch College. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. at Baruch's ARC Arena in Manhattan. Live stats and a live video feed of the game will be available with links on the USMMA Women's Basketball Schedule Page.
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