PHILADELPHIA – Backed by a balanced attack, the Saint Joseph’s women’s basketball team topped Lehigh, 66-48, Sunday afternoon in the Hawks’ home opener at Hagan Arena. Senior guard Katie Kuester (Media, Pa./Academy of Notre Dame de Namur) tallied a team-best 14 points as Saint Joseph’s had nine of 10 players score on the afternoon.
Up 9-7, the Hawks started pulling away. Sparked by a jumper by sophomore guard Erin Shields, Saint Joseph’s scored 13 of the next 15 points to open up a 22-9 lead. Six different Hawks scored during the streak with sophomore guard Kasie Parker (Ovideo, Fla./Lake Howell) capping it with a three-pointer at 8:41.
The Hawks (1-1) would extend their lead to as many as 19 before taking a 36-19 advantage into halftime. Saint Joseph’s limited Lehigh to just 4-of-24 from the floor (16.7 percent), while connecting on 15-of-36 (41.7 percent) at the other end.
In the second half, Lehigh (0-2) cut the deficit to 10, 42-32, just under five minutes into the stanza as Alexa Williams scored two of her team-high 14 points on a jumper at 15:07.
Saint Joseph’s never faltered though, keeping the Mountain Hawks at a 10-point distance over the remainder of the game, while holding Lehigh to just 29.2 percent from the floor (14-of-48) and caused 18 turnovers for the game.
At the other end, the Hawks finished 28-of-67 from the floor (41.8 percent), 6-of-14 from three-point range (42.9 percent) and hit 4-of-7 from the foul line (57.1 percent). Kuester added three assists and two rebounds, while classmate Michelle Baker (Wilmington, Del./Brandywine) added 13 points, four rebounds, three assists and two steals. Redshirt sophomore Ashley Robinson (Philadelphia, Pa./Archbishop Wood) Grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds to go with six points as the Hawks finished with a 41-36 rebounding edge.
The Hawks return to action next Friday and Saturday at the TD Bank Classic. The Hawks face Dartmouth at 5 p.m. on Friday then face host Vermont at 7 p.m. on Saturday.