KEENE, N.H. - The Keene State women's basketball program celebrated Senior Day and the Owls' final Little East Conference (LEC) regular season contest with a 82-60 win over Rhode Island College for their seventh consecutive victory on Saturday afternoon at Spaulding Gymnasium. The Owls honored the success of seniors Stephanie D'Annolfo and Amanda Petrow before the game began.
- Keene State: 18-7, 11-3 LEC
- Rhode Island: 5-20, 2-12 LEC
"I think our defense played a huge part in our seven straight wins. Playing well on defense brings about good offense, so our defense made the difference once again." -- Senior forward Amanda Petrow
"If we can keep up the defense like we have been playing, and then continue to make our shots, we will be unstoppable. As for Keene State basketball, I've built a lot of character, met a lot of great people, and it's made me the person I am today." -- Senior forward Stephanie D'Annolfo
"To prepare for the postseason, we have been having mental days and physical days. I think the mental days are the most important for us. It's essential for us to get mentally ready for the teams that we play against, knowing their scout and just preparing the best we can." -- Junior guard Sandi Purcell
How It Happened
It was another impressive performance for Sandi Purcell, as the junior guard rewrote her career-high in scoring for the second time in as many games, pouring in a career-best 30 points and connecting on eight three-pointers. Purcell finished the contest shooting 11-for-19 from the field and added four assists, two rebounds and three steals. Sophomore guard Emily McPadden tallied 18 points, as seniors Amanda Petrow and Stephanie D'Annolfo rounded out the double-digit scoring with 14 and 13 points, respectively. D'Annolfo also added game-highs of seven rebounds and seven assists.
Jessa Rubera led the Anchorwomen with 18 points, three rebounds, and two assists. Jordyn Gauvin and Molly Phillips chipped in 11 points apiece, while Gauvin pulled down a team-high six rebounds.
Rhode Island opened the first quarter with a narrow lead of 6-3, but Purcell fired off a trey to tie it up at six points each with 6:46 remaining. The Anchorwomen held a three-point edge with a layup from Gauvin to make it 14-11, but a layup and free throw from Petrow tied the game at 14 apiece. Rhode Island used a free throw and two layups in the final minutes to take the lead over the Owls as time expired at the end of one, 19-16.
Locked in at 21 points for each side with 6:53 on the clock in the second quarter, the Owls offense ignited to score 15 unanswered points and grab a 36-21 lead over the visitors, capped off by a basket beyond the arc from Purcell with 2:33 remaining in the second quarter. The Anchorwomen would finish off the quarter with five straight points, including a last second shot from Alex Moore, but Keene State held a double-digit lead over Rhode Island at the half, 36-26.
The Owls scored the first 14 points of the quarter to extend the gap to 24 points over the Anchorwomen, as Purcell started the run with a trey off a pass from freshman forward Kenzie Bennett. Keene State extended its margin to 60-29 off a layup from Petrow, before Rhode Island cut its deficit by seven with a layup from Rubera and 2:59 remaining in the third stanza. McPadden responded with a three-pointer, dished out by Purcell, as the third ended with the Owls on top 63-40.
Back and forth baskets began the fourth quarter, before McPadden converted back-to-back three-pointers to push a 74-47 Keene State advantage with 5:45 remaining, as a layup from D'Annolfo and six free throws from three players capped off the 82-60 win over the Anchorwomen.
Inside the Paint
- Purcell's 30-point game has not been matched by a woman's basketball player since Siobhan Carnell scored 34 points against UMass Dartmouth in 2013.
- Keene State has scored a season-high 39 points from beyond the arc in each of the past two games.
- Today's 82 points marks the most points scored in a game for the Owls this season.
- Keene State held a 42-32 advantage on the glass over Rhode Island and dished out a season-high 20 assists.
- With the win, the Owls have secured the No. 2 seed for the second consecutive year in the upcoming LEC Championship Tournament.
- No. 2 Keene State will host No. 7 Southern Maine on Tuesday, February 21st in the quarterfinals of the LEC Tournament with a 5:30 p.m. tip-off.
- No. 8 Rhode Island will travel to No. 1 Eastern Connecticut State on Tuesday for the first round of the LEC Tournament and a 5:30 p.m. tilt.