MANCHESTER, N.H. – Senior Meg Morrissey (So. Kingstown, R.I.) led four scorers in double digits with 12 points, but the Saint Anselm College women's basketball team dropped a 71-63 decision to Southern New Hampshire University on Wednesday evening at the SNHU Fieldhouse.
The Hawks dip to 3-2 on the season, including 0-2 in Northeast-10 play, while the Penmen improve to 3-1, 1-0 NE-10.
Morrissey was 4-for-8 from the floor, including 1-for-2 from long distance, but was just 3-for-7 at the line in what was a recurring theme for the Hawks all night. Senior Tori Lehr (Cohasset, Mass.) netted 11 points (5-10 FG; 1-4 FT) and pulled down seven boards, while classmate Allie Jones (So. Kingstown, R.I.) posted 10 points (5-10 FG), five rebounds and four assists. Freshman Candace Andrews (Boston, Mass.) filled the stat sheet despite a tough shooting night as she tallied 10 points (4-15 FG; 2-6 FT), a career-high eight rebounds, five assists, which matched her personal best, a pair of steals and two blocks.
Amra Elezovic poured in a game-high 25 points for the Penmen.
After layups by Jones and Andrews staked the visitors to an early 4-0 lead, Southern New Hampshire would tie the game five times, but did not grab its first lead until 12:43 of the first half when a Brooke Springfield free throw finished off a three-point play and made it 16-15. The teams would then trade the lead six times before an Elezovic 3-pointer put SNHU on top, 23-21 with 8:33 to play in the first.
The Penmen would lead by four three minutes later when Morrissey made one of two at the line before baskets by Jones and senior Mariah Wynn (Boston, Mass.) gave Saint Anselm the lead back at 30-29 with 4:20 remaining. Elezovic would once again answer with a jumper that quelled the short rally and snatched the lead from the Hawks for the final time.
Saint Anselm trailed by three in the final minute when a Morrissey layup and one of two at the line from Lehr knotted the game at 37 with 21 seconds left, but Elezovic buried a 3 with less than eight seconds to go to send SNHU into the locker room with a 40-37 edge.
The Penmen came out of the break on an 11-2 run that was made up of five different scorers to open up a 51-39 lead with 12:03 remaining. A pair of Morrissey free throws, followed by layups from senior Briana Jones (White Plains, N.Y.) and Andrews, cut the Saint Anselm deficit to six midway through the second stanza, but SNHU would run its lead back to double digits at 55-45 with 7:45 to go on buckets from Elezovic and Springfield.
The margin would fluctuate between six and 10 until a 3 from senior Kierra Moore (Albany, N.Y.) made it a 68-63 game with 26 seconds left, but the Penmen would sink three of four from the line to seal the win.
Briana Jones finished with six points (2-9 FG; 2-2 FT) and six boards, while Moore also registered six points (2-5 FG; 2-5 3-FG). Senior Ashley Viselli (Groveland, Mass.) chipped in with four points (1-1 FG; 2-2 FT), seven rebounds and three assists.
Saint Anselm outshot Southern New Hampshire, 41.7 percent (25-60) to 40.4 percent (21-52), but SNHU held a slight advantage from beyond the arc (4-8 to 3-10) and a monster advantage at the line as the Penmen (25-31) drained 15 more free throws than the Hawks (10-23) and shot it better by nearly double (.806-.435). The Penmen narrowly won the glass (40-39), while the Hawks won the paint (30-22) and only turned it over 12 times, while forcing 14 SNHU mistakes.
The Hawks return to action Saturday, Nov. 23 at 1:30 p.m. when they take on Assumption College at Laska Gymnasium. The next home game for the Hawks is Tuesday, Nov. 26 at 5:30 p.m. when they play host to Merrimack College at Stoutenburgh Gymnasium. Stay up-to-date with the latest news, including game previews and recaps, directly from the Saint Anselm College athletic department by liking us on Facebook and following us on Twitter @STAHawks.