MANCHESTER, N.H. – The Saint Anselm College women's basketball team snapped a three game losing-streak with a 76-70 victory over visiting Merrimack College on Saturday afternoon in Northeast-10 Conference action at Stoutenburgh Gymnasium in Manchester, N.H.
Candace Andrews posted her first double-double of the year with a game-high 24 points and 10 rebounds to go with five assists, four steals and two blocks. Clairee Putnam joined her in double figures with 12 points, while Kaila Duarte, Caitlyn Abela and Ali Glennon scored nine points apiece.
Duarte pulled in a game-high 17 rebounds, including nine offensive boards, while also registering three blocks for Saint Anselm (4-3, 2-3 NE10).
Merrimack (3-5, 2-2 NE10) was led by 21 points from My'Asia Alston, with Lexi Martin (18 points) and Hannah Neild (13 points) the other leading scorers. Denia Davis-Stewart came off the bench to grab a team-high 15 rebounds and add two blocks.
The Hawks fell behind early in the first quarter following an Alston jumper that put the Warriors on top 6-5, but a 7-0 run by the Hawks capped by an Emma Daly triple put the Hawks in front 12-6 with 3:37 to play. Merrimack would claw to within three after Savannah Johnson knocked down a jumper, but Ashley Briggs scored the final points of the period to give Saint Anselm a 17-11 lead after one.
Kaila Duarte converted a three-point play at the 6:13 mark of the second quarter to give the Hawks an 11-point lead at 24-13. However, Merrimack ended the half on a 12-3 run as Alston scored inside before the final horn to cut the deficit to 27-25 headed into the break.
The third quarter was all Saint Anselm as the Hawks outscored the Warriors 21-12 in the period to take a 48-37 lead into the fourth quarter. Candace Andrews scored 12 of the team's points during the period.
The two teams traded baskets to open the quarter as an Erin Waters jumper at the 8:06 mark kept it an 11-point game at 50-39. Merrimack responded again, using a 7-0 run to climb back to 50-46 before Caitlyn Abela connected on a three-pointer at the 3:08 mark to put the Hawks back in front, 53-46.
Alston scored on the other end to make it a 53-48 game, and Lexi Martin later scored inside to cut the deficit to 53-50 with 1:23 remaining. After another defensive stop by the Warriors, Alston was fouled attempting a three-pointer with 32 seconds left. She calmly knocked down all three free throws, and both teams traded empty possessions, as the game spilled into the first overtime.
Andrews scored the first two baskets of the extra period, and following another Martin layup, Kaila Duarte hit a pair of free throws to keep the Hawks in front 59-55 with 2:52 remaining. Ali Glennon hit a runner in the paint to extend the lead to 61-55, but Merrimack answered again as Martin hit back-to-back left handed runners to pull the Warriors back to 61-59.
With 17 seconds remaining, Andrews blocked a three-point attempt by Hannah Neild, but Alston was there for the rebound. Alston worked her way inside and knocked down a jumper that tied the game at 61-61 with only nine seconds remaining. The Hawks drew up one final play, leading to a look for Andrews, but her shot was off target, as the game needed five more minutes to decide a winner.
Lexi Martin gave the Warriors their first lead since the 8:18 mark of the third quarter with a pair of free throws, before Andrews knocked down a jumper on the other end to put Saint Anselm back in front 64-63. After an Andrews steal, Clairee Putnam knocked down a triple to push the Hawk lead back to four at 67-63.
Hannah Neild answered with a triple of her own to keep it a one point game, but Putnam buried another three from the top of the key to keep Saint Anselm ahead, 70-66.
The game turned into a free throw contest, and the Hawks hit 6-of-9 freebies down the stretch while forcing three turnovers to pull away for the 76-70 victory.
The Hawks shot 36% (27-of-75) from the field in the game awhile connecting on only 15-of-27 (55.6%) of their free throws. Merrimack ended the day shooting 37.9% (25-of-66) from the floor while committing 21 turnovers to 23 for the Hawks. Saint Anselm controlled the glass, outrebounding the Warriors 52-40, leading to 20 second chance points.
Saint Anselm begins a four-game road trip on Tuesday night, starting with a 5:30 p.m. matchup at Assumption College.
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, Instagram and Snapchat @STAHawks.