WEST HARTFORD, Conn. - Senior's Kayla Guest (Newington, Conn.) and Rajeen Mayo (Middletown, Conn.) combined for 39 points to lead the University of Saint Joseph women's basketball team past the Rivier Raiders, 80-55, at home on Saturday afternoon in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference bout inside the O'Connell Center. Guest poured in a team-high 20 points and nine rebounds, while Mayo finished with 19 points and a career-high nine assists.
Score: University of Saint Joseph - 80, Rivier University - 55
Records: USJ (8-9, 3-6), RIV (0-14, 0-10)
Location: West Hartford, Conn. - O'Connell Center
Date: Saturday, January 27, 2018
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The Blue Jays jumped out to an early 6-0 lead over the Raiders in the first quarter after a pair of made free throws from freshman Anna Chevarella (Derby, Conn.), who made her second start of her career.
- Rivier would answer back with an 8-2 run and tied the game 8-all after a made free throw from junior Kaylee Kacavas (Dracut, Mass.) halfway through the opening frame.
- Kacavas would continue the Rivier run scoring the next five consecutive points to build a 13-8 advantage with 3:43 left on the clock.
- USJ's defense tightened up and didn't allow another Raider point over the remainder of the period and pulled within 13-12 after the opening quarter of action.
- The Blue Jays exploded for a 32-point second quarter to take control of the game and would never look back.
- An 11-0 run over the first two minutes of the second period helped USJ regain the lead, 23-13, and they would never trail again for the remainder of the game.
- With 2:31 left before halftime, Chevarella drained a clutch three to build the Blue Jays' lead to 13 (37-24), which sparked a 10-3 run to close out the half and give USJ a 44-27 lead at the break.
- The hosts would keep their foot on the pedal in the third quarter and increased their lead to 22 (53-31) following a triple from freshman Shaniyah Williams (New Britain, Conn.).
- After four straight points from Guest late in the third period, USJ held a commanding 61-34 lead and would enter the fourth and final quarter ahead 63-40.
- USJ would take its largest lead of the game, 69-40, following a lay-in from sophomore Charlotte Eberhardt (Thomaston, Conn.) with 7:57 left in regulation and coast to victory over the final minutes for the 80-55 final margin.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Guest led the Blue Jays with a team-high 20 points on 9-of-15 shooting from the floor, and also pulled down a team-best nine rebounds to go with four blocks.
- Mayo was right behind Guest and finished with 19 points going a perfect 7-of-7 from the charity stripe while adding a career-high nine assists.
- Williams joined the pair of seniors in double figures and finished with a 14-point, six-rebound, and four-assist game.
- The Raiders also had three players finish in double figures led by Kacavas who dropped in a game-high 26 points on 9-of-23 shooting from the field.
- Junior's Megan Hamel (Colebrook, N.H.) and Lizzy Meehan (Nashua, N.H.) both posted double-doubles for the visitors. Hamel went for 10 points and 11 boards while Meehan ended with 10 and 10.
- The Blue Jays recorded a season-high 22 assists on 31-of-64 (48.4%) shot attempts from the field as a team.
- 48.4% marked the second-best shooting performance for the Blue Jays on the season thus far, while 80 points were a season-high.
- USJ forced 23 Rivier turnovers and turned them into 26 points and controlled the paint outscoring the Raiders, 48-30, in points in the paint.
The USJ women's basketball team will look to keep things rolling when they return to the hardwood next on Tuesday, Jan. 30 on the road at Anna Maria. The GNAC tilt is slated to tip-off at 5:30 p.m.