NEW LONDON, Conn. – The University of Saint Joseph women's basketball team overcame a 14-point second-half deficit to post a 74-70 victory over Mitchell College and move to 4-2 overall on the season on Wednesday night in midweek non-conference showdown at the Yarnall Athletic Center. Seniors Rajeen Mayo (Middletown, Conn.) and Kayla Guest (Newington, Conn.) combined for 53 points on the night to lead the Blue Jays. Mayo scored a game-high 27 points and shot 17-for-18 from the free throw line, while Guest netted 26 points on 10-for-19 shooting from the field and grabbed eight rebounds in the victory.
Score: University of Saint Joseph - 74, Mitchell College - 70
Records: USJ (4-2), MC (0-4)
Location: New London, Conn. - Yarnall Athletic Center
Date: November 29, 2017
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Mitchell led by one, 18-17, after the opening quarter, but built the margin to eight by the halftime intermission, 36-28.
- Allegra Jones (New Haven, Conn.) drilled four three-pointers and netted 14 points in the first half to stake the Mariners the eight-point lead at the break.
- Guest kept the Blue Jays within striking distance with 16 points over the first 20 minutes.
- In the early minutes of the second half, Mitchell pushed the lead to 14 following a jumper by Haley Garcia (South Windsor, Conn.).
- Saint Joseph responded with a huge 10-0 run to claw back into the game, 44-40, with Mayo providing eight points during the spurt.
- The Mariners scored six straight points to pump the lead back to double digits, 50-40, with 2:33 left in the third, only to see the margin trimmed back to six, 54-48, by the end of the period.
- Guest carried the Blue Jays through the opening minutes of the fourth, scoring a pair of buckets as the visitors kept fighting.
- Her final basket of the night tied the game at 57-57 with 7:13 to go, though she picked up her fifth foul just 1:33 later.
- Mayo and junior Diamond Wallen (Hartford, Conn.) finished the job for Saint Joseph, combining for 13 points in the final 4:42 to seal the win.
- Wallen's lay-up with 3:56 to play gave the Blue Jays their first lead, 62-61, since the opening quarter, and the Blue Jays would never trail again.
- Mitchell later tied the game on a jumper by Jones with 1:31 remaining, but Mayo drew a foul on the next USJ possession and drained a pair of free throws.
- She converted on 5-of-6 attempts from the line in the final minute as the Blue Jays held on for the 74-70 victory.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Wallen contributed nine points and a team-high 10 rebounds, while freshman Shaniyah Williams (New Britain, Conn.) chipped in eight points.
- Jones paced the Mariners with a career-high 25 points on 10-for-18 shooting and added six steals.
- Garcia and Jessica Lohneiss (West Hartford, Conn.) also finished in double digits with 14 and 10 points, respectively, for the Mariners.
- Saint Joseph shot 40 free throws in the game and outscored Mitchell 31-11 at the charity stripe.
- The Blue Jays shot just 31.8% (21-66) from the floor, but thier defense forced 29 turnovers that resulted in 29 points to power the comeback win.
The USJ women's basketball team returns to action next at home against Lasell College on Saturday at 3:30 p.m for their GNAC opener, while Mitchell will next host Lesley University on Saturday, December 2 at 1 p.m.