WASHINGTON, D.C. - In its final game before the Thanksgiving break, the Catholic University women's basketball team used suffocating defense while outrebounding St. Mary's (Md.) by 25 en route to a 72-44 nonconference victory Tuesday night at Franny Murray Court.
The Cardinals (3-1) posted their ninth-straight win over the Seahawks while forcing 26 turnovers and limiting them to just 29.4 percent shooting from the floor. The Cards' last loss against St. Mary's came back on Jan. 25, 2007 by a score of 43-39.
Junior Sydney Poindexter scored a game-high 18 points to lead Catholic offensively while junior Megan Stafford added 15 points and eight rebounds. Freshman Luca Mamula totaled 10 points, six rebounds and five steals.
Catholic jumped out to a commanding 18-4 lead after the first quarter, holding the Seahawks to just 1-of-11 shooting from the floor. The Cardinals held St. Mary's scoreless for the final 5:46 to turn a 5-4 lead into a 14-point margin.
Four points is the least the team has surrendered in a quarter since it held King's (Pa.) to just three points in the second quarter on Dec. 29, 2017.
Led by nine points from Poindexter, the Cards extended their lead to as many as 23 in the second quarter before taking a 35-14 halftime advantage. Poindexter outscored the Seahawks by herself, finishing the first half with 15 points in 15 minutes.
Fourteen points is the fewest Catholic has allowed in a half since holding Goucher to just 11 in the first half on Jan. 17, 2018.
Both teams caught fire in the third quarter, combining for 41 points and shooting 48.3 percent from the floor. A total of 15 players scored at least one point, led by six points and four rebounds from Stafford. The St. Mary's bench accounted for 14 of its 19 points.
The Cardinals led by as many as 34 points in the fourth quarter, limiting the Seahawks (1-4) to just eight points on 3-of-14 shooting. Stafford added five more points in the final quarter, totaling 11 of her 15 in the second half.
Senior Emily O'Connor finished with five points and a career-high six rebounds. She also drew two charges. Sophomore Becca Rhoades had six points and five rebounds, both career highs, while senior Sarah O'Neill had a career-high seven rebounds and dished out three assists. Sophomore Cristin George also tied a career high with five rebounds.
Catholic returns to action on Sunday, November 25 when it welcomes SUNY New Paltz to Franny Murray Court for a 2 p.m., tip-off.
NOTE: Whenever the women's basketball teams from St. Mary's and Catholic face each other, they stop to celebrate the memory Jamie Roberts through One Bird Family.
A 2011 graduate of St. Mary's, Roberts was a three-sport standout and team captain in soccer, basketball and lacrosse for the Seahawks who was honored with the Athletic Director's Award and named Female Athlete of the Year. She later became an assistant women's basketball coach at Catholic in the fall of 2011 before joining the athletic communications office as an assistant in the fall of 2013. She made it her mission to positively impact the lives and well-being of all those she came into contact with.
Tragically, Roberts passed away on June 13, 2014 while participating in the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults' 4K for Cancer bike ride across America. She remains, and will forever remain, a loyal teammate, esteemed colleague and treasured friend.
In honor of Jamie's favorite color, members of both coaching staffs wore orange as a way to visually recognize Roberts and her lasting impact on the athletic departments of both schools.