|Bridgette Mann||Alexix Roman||Sarah Payonk|
SCRANTON -- Sophomore guard Bridgette Mann (Canadensis, Pa./Wallenpaupack) led the way yet again for the University of Scranton women's basketball team, scoring 19 points, as the third-ranked Lady Royals knocked off Juniata on Saturday, 76-59, in the Landmark Conference opener for both teams inside the John Long Center.
With the win, the Lady Royals will head into finals week with an undefeated 7-0 record, 1-0 in the Landmark. Juniata fell to 4-3 and 0-1 in the Landmark with the defeat.
In the opening period, Scranton opened a quick 6-0 lead on Juniata, but the visiting Eagles fought back, eventually taking a 16-10 lead with three minutes to go in the quarter. Scranton, however, ended the period on a run, as a 9-2 spurt over the final moments of the period gave Scranton a 21-20 lead after the first 10 minutes.
Scranton proceeded to clamp down on defense in the second quarter, allowing just nine points, and ended the period on another huge run to open a 38-29 lead at intermission. After the game was tied at 25-all with six minutes left, the Lady Royals ended the half on a 13-4 run to go up by a sizable margin at the break.
To open the second half, Juniata was able to slice the Scranton lead down to five points (46-41) with 3:41 to go in the third quarter. But, once again, the Lady Royals ended a quarter on a run that ultimately put Juniata away for the day, as Scranton went into the final period up 11 at 54-43.
Once Scranton got up double-figures in the game, Juniata was unable to get much closer, as the Lady Royals coasted down the stretch to notch a 17-point victory in their Landmark Conference season opener.
Overall, Mann led the way for Scranton for the third straight game, scoring 19 points, while dishing out seven assists. Mann also had another solid game from the free throw line, going 5-of-6 in the contest.
Elsewhere, senior forward Alexix Roman (Hawley, Pa./Wallenpaupack) came off the bench to score 18 points (on 7-of-11 shooting), while pulling down nine rebounds. Fellow senior forward Sarah Payonk (Schwenksville, Pa./Spring-Ford) added 13 points and also pulled down nine rebounds, while senior Denise Rizzo (Paramus, N.J./Holy Angels) started the contest and scored eight points.
The University of Scranton women's basketball team will now take a break for finals, returning to the court on Wednesday, December 14, when they travel across town to take on Marywood. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m.