The now 11-5 women’s basketball team provided great entertainment for the fans who came to see them at home this weekend, as they took on both RIT and William Smith. The Saints extended their winning streak to seven games on Friday night, beating the RIT Tigers 64-63. Katie Gallagher ’20 led the team with 12 points, including the buzzer-beating layup that secured the Saints’ victory, while Meghan Hynes ’19 put up another 10 points.
Dominant throughout much of the game, the Saints took control early and held a five-point lead through the first quarter. Kaelyn Kohlasch ’18 and Annabella Pugliese ’20 helped the Saints remain on top in the second, as RIT came within one point of the lead. Kohlasch leads the team in three-pointers with 33.
The Tigers outshot the Saints in the third quarter, bringing them to just a two-point deficit heading into the final frame, but the late-game push proved to be too little. Six straight points from the Tigers tied the game at sixty, but a pair of free throws from Hynes and a layup from Gallagher put the game away.
The Saints hoped to continue their streak on Saturday afternoon, but fell to William Smith 59-43 in yet another Liberty League matchup. The Herons secured the lead early, with a score of 11-2 after the first quarter. Hynes opened the second quarter with a three-pointer, cutting the Herons’ lead to just five. However, William Smith was still on top at halftime, leading 32-14.
William Smith’s offensive burst continued through the third quarter, and 11 straight points gave the Herons a 25-point advantage. In the fourth quarter, the Saints put up 17 points as they worked to curtail William Smith’s run, but never came closer than 14 points behind. Cara Waterson ’18 scored 13 points to lead the team, while Katie Frederick ’21 also contributed eight points.
Both games were important matchups, as teams are contending for the top with the playoffs in mind. The very competitive Liberty League currently has RIT on top at 7-2, but there are five more teams on their heels with 6-3 records. The Saints are one of those teams, joined by Ithaca, Vassar, RPI, and Skidmore. This puts the pressure on for the remaining third of the season, as five of the Saints’ final games come against one of these competitors, in addition to a rematch with William Smith.
The Saints will look to their impressive home record to give them a competitive edge. They are currently 5-1 at home and 2-2 on the road. Five more games will be played in the Ronald T. Burkman Gymnasium before the end of the regular season. The Saints are back to work again at home this weekend, taking on a Vassar team that won three straight on Friday, followed by Bard College on Saturday.