December 1, 2009

Hartford Hawks Second Half Surge Sinks Sacred Heart, 68-53

Dec. 1, 2009

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FAIRFIELD, CT (November 28, 2009) - The Harford Hawks shot a blistering 67.9% (19-28) in the second half on the way to erasing a 13-point Sacred Heart halftime lead and post a 68-53 win Tuesday night in the William H. Pitt Center. SHU led 34-21 at the break but the Hawks used a 17-5 run to open the second stanza on the way to outscoring the Pioneers 47-19 in the second half. SHU's Alisa Apo (Freehold, NJ) led the Pioneers with 14 points, five assists and four rebounds.

The Pioneers (3-3) played a near perfect first half, shooting 50.0% (14-28) from the field, hitting four-of-six from behind the arc. On the flip side, Hartford (5-1) made just eight-of-28 (.286) and one-of-13 from three to trail by 13 at the break. SHU jumped out 8-2 on back-to-back Apo three's and built their lead to double digits by the four minute mark. Up 26-18 with six minutes left, the Pioneers closed the half with an 8-3 spurt with Apo hitting a pull up jumper to beat the halftime horn.

The second half was all Hartford as the Hawks burst out of the locker room and opened with a jumper from Jackie Smith and a three from Alex Hall. The Pioneers briefly slowed the Hawks momentum with a Kiley Evans (Cazenovia, NY) jumper and a Maggie Cosgrove (Andover, MA) three to keep the lead in double digits, 39-28.

SHU's lead was short lived however as a 13-0 run over the next five and a half minutes gave the Hawks a lead they would never give up. Hartford's Erica Beverly and Diana Delva took over inside and dominated to the tune of a 36-22 advantage in the paint. Back-to-back lay-ins from Beverly cut the SHU lead to 39-36 and a Hall gave her team their first lead of the night two possessions later with a runner in the lane, 40-39.

The Pioneers would snatch the lead back at the 9:12 mark as Apo hit a lay-up followed by a put-back by Evans for a 46-45 advantage. From there it was all Hartford as the Hawks opened a 10-point lead at the five minute mark, 58-48, with Delva scoring 11 of her game-high 17 points on the game-deciding 13-2 run.

Delva, who was limited in the first half with foul trouble, finished eight-of-nine for 17 points with five rebounds, two blocks and a steal. Beverly made six-of-10 from the field for 13 points with seven boards, four blocks and two assists in the win. Mary Silva netted 13 off the bench as the Hawk reserves outscored the Pioneer reserves 24-5.

In addition to Apo's 14 point night, Cosgrove and Evans also found double digits. Cosgrove hit five-of-eight including three three's for 13 points. Evans went for 11 points and pulled down eight rebounds in the loss. The Pioneers shot just 29.6% (8-27) in the second half.

The Pioneers will open the Northeast Conference portion of the schedule on Saturday afternoon with a trip to Fairleigh Dickinson. Tip-off is scheduled for 2:00 pm. The Pioneers carry a 21-game winning streak against NEC competition into Saturday's match-up with the Knights.

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