Despite 25 points and 10 rebounds from Lianna Carrero (Hamden, Conn.) and 17 points and 10 rebounds from Bianca Brown (West Haven, Conn.), the Albertus Magnus women's basketball team fell to Saint Joseph's College (Maine) in overtime by a score of 79-75 on Saturday afternoon.
It was the final regular-season game for both teams as Albertus moves to 14-11 on the year and 6-7 in Great Northeast Athletic Conference action. Saint Joseph's takes the win to improve to 12-1 in GNAC play, while moving to 18-7 on the year.
The Falcons battled back from being down 22 points at the 16:25 mark in the second half to take a five-point advantage with 29 seconds left on the clock. Megan McDevitt from Saint Joseph's College hit two 3-pointers in the final 20 seconds of regulation to tie the contest at 67 to force the game into the extra period.
In overtime, the Monks jumped out with a 4-0 run as the Falcons missed their first three field goal attempts. Albertus battled back to take a 73-71 lead on two Lindsay Karle (Wallingford, Conn.) free throws before Saint Joseph's took a 77-75 lead with 15 seconds left on the clock. Two free throws by Danyelle Shufelt with three seconds left clinched the victory for the Monks.
Both teams struggled from the floor early in the first half as the Falcons finished the frame 8-of-29 for a 27.6-percentage. Carrero tallied 11 first-half points along with five rebounds to lead the Falcons in the frame, while Annie Raucci (Milford, Conn.) added four points.
Saint Joseph's shot 36.4-percent from the floor in the opening half led by seven points from Abby Young.
After tying the game at eight at the 11:15 mark in the first frame, the Monks put together a 7-3 run to take a 15-11 lead. After an Albertus timeout, the Monks went on an 11-0 run to extend their lead to as much as 18 with less than two minutes before the break.
The Monks opened the second half with a 13-4 run to extend their lead to 22 points less than five minutes into the frame. The Falcons began the second half shooting 61.5-perccent in the first eight minutes of the frame and were able to cut the Monks' lead to 10 at 53-43 with 11 minutes left in regulation.
The Falcons made a strong comeback as they shot 63.3-percent from the floor in the second half, outscoring the Monks 48-35 in the frame.
Brown added six blocks on the afternoon, tying her career-high, while she recorded three steals. Karle contributed with seven assists as she was 2-of-6 from behind the arc as well.
The Falcons have already produced their most successful season in the last eight years as their 14 regular-season wins are the most for the program since the 2003-04 season, while they opened up the 2011-12 season with a 4-0 record – the best in program history.
Despite the loss in their final GNAC contest, the Falcons earned the seventh-seed in the upcoming GNAC Tournament, which begins on Tuesday, Feb. 21. Albertus will travel to Standish, Maine on Tuesday to face Saint Joseph's College for the second time in four days as the Monks are the second seed. That game is scheduled for a 5:30 p.m. tip-off.
The Falcons are now 0-6 all-time against the Monks dating back to their first meeting during the 1998-99 season.