|Makenzie Mason||Emily Sheehan|
HUNTINGDON, Pa. – The No. 14 University of Scranton women's basketball team (20-3, 10-2 Landmark) outscored a pesky Juniata team by a 22-11 margin in the fourth quarter and captured its eighth straight win with a 69-57 victory over the Eagles (4-19, 1-11 Landmark) on Saturday afternoon at Memorial Gymnasium in Huntingdon.
Scranton remains tied with Catholic at the top of the Landmark Conference standings with two regular season games remaining.
Senior Makenzie Mason (Doylestown, Pa./Central Bucks West) had 17 points to lead the way offensively for the Lady Royals, while classmate Emily Sheehan (Dunmore, Pa./Dunmore) knocked down 8-of-10 from the free throw line en route to 16 points. Senior Sofia Recupero (Whitestone, N.Y./Saint Francis Prep) and sophomore Emily Shurina (East Meadow, N.Y./East Meadow) added 11 points apiece for Scranton.
Gracie Stauffer paced the Eagles with 21 points and nine rebounds, while Grace Long had eight points.
Mason hit a layup at the 4:10 mark of the first quarter to kickstart a 10-3 run for the Lady Royals and Sheehan buried a three to give the visitors a 16-10 lead after one. Sheehan's three with 7:38 left in the second quarter extended the lead to 23-10 and the two teams traded baskets for the remainder of the half as a pair of free throws from freshman Bridget Monaghan (Florham Park, N.J./Morristown-Beard) gave Scranton a 35-23 advantage heading into the locker room.
Freshman Kyra Quigley (Drexel Hill, Pa./Sacred Heart Academy Bryn Mawr) hit a layup to give the Lady Royals a 41-31 edge with 5:39 left in the third quarter before the Eagles responded with an 11-0 run to take a 42-41 lead at the 2:24 mark of the quarter. The Lady Royals would take the lead for good in the final minute of the quarter as Sheehan sank a pair of free throws to make it a 47-46 game after three. Scranton kicked off the fourth quarter with a quick 7-0 spurt capped by a three-point play from Sheehan that extended the lead to 54-46 with 6:39 to play. Juniata cut the lead to four at 59-55 with 2:59 to play, but Sheehan knocked down four consecutive free throws to stretch the lead back to eight.
Scranton connected on 31-of-36 (86.1%) from the free throw line in the game.
The Lady Royals shot 28.1% (16-of-57) from the field and 27.3% (6-of-22) from deep, while Juniata was 18-of-56 (32.1%) from the floor and 5-of-16 (31.3%) from beyond the arc.
The University of Scranton women's basketball team will conclude the road portion of their regular season slate when they visit Drew on Wednesday, Feb. 19 at 7 p.m.