PHILADELPHIA – The Saint Joseph’s women’s basketball team posted its second-straight win as the Hawks topped Drexel, 59-50, Tuesday evening at Hagan Arena. Saint Joseph’s held the Dragons to 28.1 percent shooting (18-of-64) for the game and never trailed as the Hawks improved to 4-3 on the season.
Taking control of the game quickly, the Hawks jumped out to a 10-2 lead just on a free throw by junior guard Ashley Prim (Ansonia, Conn./Kolbe Cathedral) just over five minutes into the game. Saint Joseph’s upped the margin to 21-8 on a jumper by sophomore guard Erin Shield (Drexel Hill, Pa./Archbishop Carroll) with 7:44 to go in the half.
The Dragons, who shot just 8-of-27 from the floor (29.6 percent) in the first half, fought back from down 15 to make it a 31-20 advantage for SJU heading into the second half. The Hawks’ Michelle Baker (Wilmington, Del/Brandywine) paced her squad in the first half, scoring 11 of her 15 points during the opening 20 minutes.
Coming off a 48.1 percent shooting performance (13-of-27) in the first half, the Hawks quickly pulled further away from Drexel, opening a 40-22 lead on a free throw by senior center Samira van Grinsven (Helmond, Netherland/Casper College) at 14:25.
Down 52-32 with 6:15 left to play, Drexel began to chip away at the SJU lead. Baker snapped a 6-0 run by Drexel to make it 54-38 with 4:02 to go, but the Dragons continued to close the score.
Up 54-46 with under a minute to play, Saint Joseph’s hit five-straight free throws to close out the contest and snap a three-game losing streak against Drexel.
For the game, Saint Joseph’s shot 41.7 percent from the field (20-of-48), hit 38.5 percent of their three-point shots (5-of-13) and knocked down 14-of-19 from the foul line (73.7 percent).
Individually, senior guard Katie Kuester (Media, Pa./Academy of Notre Dame de Namur) matched Baker with 15 points for the Hawks. Shields and Prim each added four assists for SJU, with Shields finishing with eight points and Prim with one. Senior Kelly Cavallo (Hampton Bays, N.Y./Westhampton Beach) and van Grinsven each grabbed eight rebounds apiece, with the two adding seven points and five points, respectively.
At the other end, Hollie Mershon led all scorers with 20 points.
The Hawks return to action on December 7 at Lafayette. Game time is set for 7 p.m.