|Makenzie Mason||Hannah Kowalski||Sofia Recupero|
SCRANTON, Pa. - Junior forward Makenzie Mason (Doylestown, Pa./Central Bucks West) scored a game-high 15 points to lead a balanced offensive attack, as The University of Scranton women's basketball team coasted past visiting Susquehanna on Wednesday night in Landmark Conference action inside the John Long Center.
With the win, the Lady Royals, ranked sixth in the WBCA Top 25 Coaches' Poll and seventh in the D3Hoops.com Top 25, moved to 19-1 overall for the year and 8-1 in the Landmark Conference. Susquehanna dropped to 6-13 and 3-6 in the Landmark with the loss.
To start the night, Susquehanna scored the game's first basket to take an early 2-0 lead, which proved to be their only advantage of the night over the Lady Royals. From there in the first quarter, Scranton took control, opening a 12-5 lead on the Riverhawks with 3:22 to go in the period.
As the quarter wore down, Scranton opened an eight-point lead to end the first period at 18-10. The second quarter saw both defense take over, with the Lady Royals only outscoring the Riverhawks, 11-8, to take a 29-18 lead into intermission.
Out of the break, the Lady Royals started knocking down shots in the third quarter, while continuing to play tremendous on defense.
To start the third, Scranton quickly opened a 17-point lead (35-18), as the closest Susquehanna came to the Scranton lead the rest of the period was 11 points (38-27). After the dust settled in the quarter, he Lady Royals went into the final period up, 47-30.
In the fourth quarter, Scranton poured it on, scoring 23 points in the final 10 minutes to coast down the stretch to a 28-point win. On the flip side, the Lady Royals defense returned to their usual selves in the victory, as they allowed just 24 points, total, in the final 20 minutes of regulation.
Overall, Mason led the Lady Royals in scoring for the eighth time on the '18-19 season with her 15 point performance. She also pulled down seven rebounds, and dished out four assists in the win, as well.
Elsewhere, junior forward Sofia Recupero (Whitestone, N.Y./Saint Francis Prep) and freshman guard Hannah Kowalski (Clarks Summit, Pa./Abington Heights) scored 12 points, apiece, in the victory. Recupero pulled down six rebounds overall, while Kowalski, making the first start of her career on the night, had four rebounds and two assists.
Rounding out the top scorers for Scranton were sophomore Taylor Rodriguez (Wayne, N.J./Wayne Hills) and freshman Emily Shurina (East Meadow, N.Y./East Meadow), who pitched in with nine points, apiece. Rodriguez, who also started, pulled down six 'boards in the win, while Shurina made six free throws on the evening.
Defensively, the Lady Royals held Susquehanna to just 28.6 percent shooting from the floor on the night, as for the 13th time on the season Scranton held an opponent to under 50 points. The Lady Royals, who forced 16 turnovers, also outrebounded the Riverhawks by a 44-32 edge.
The University of Scranton women's basketball team returns to action on Saturday, as they travel to Catholic for another Landmark Conference showdown. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m.