Fairfield, Conn. (February 16, 2013)—Defense reigned supreme as the Sacred Heart Women's Basketball Team force Robert Morris to turnover the ball 29 times to win the battle against the Colonials 59-52 Saturday afternoon in the William H. Pitt Center. Sophomore Gabrielle Washington (Mesa, Ariz.) led the team with 19 points as the Pioneers improved their win streak to eight games.
Morgan Merriman (Seattle, Wa.) and Ericka Norman (Chino Hills, Calif.) flirted with a double-double in the win. Merriman put 11 points on the scoreboard and pulled down eight rebounds, while the junior point guard posted eight points and seven assists.
Sacred Heart maintained the lead for the majority of the first half, with the Colonials tying the game at two, four and eight points before the Pioneers knocked down back-to-back threes to improve their lead to eight points. Robert Morris chipped away to take its first lead of the game 21-20 on Artemis Spanou's free throws. The Colonials maintained the lead until the halftime buzzer, sending SHU into the break down 25-23.
The Pioneers opened the second half with a six-point run to take a brief 29-28 lead. The teams exchanged points for the next eight minutes, but Robert Morris always seemed to come out on top. With 9:29 remaining, Alissa Tarsi (Clinton, N.J.) landed two from the charity stripe to give Sacred Heart the lead they maintained until the end, putting SHU up 40-39. Minutes later, Washington, who was 9-for-10 from the line, kicked off a 7-2 SHU run with two foul shots. The run boosted Sacred Heart to a six-point lead with five minutes remaining.
Sacred Heart takes the court again on Monday when they host Saint Francis U at 8:00 p.m.