Shlimon Scorches RPI As Women's Hoops Picks Up First Win

Lilly Shlimon (14) scored a career high 23 points against RPI.
Lilly Shlimon (14) scored a career high 23 points against RPI.

KEENE, N.H.--Freshman guard Lilly Shlimon scored a career high 23 points on 8-for-13 shooting from the field to lead the Keene State College women's basketball team to a 60-57 win over Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute at Spaulding Gym on Monday night.

Records

  • Keene State: 1-4
  • RPI: 3-2

How it Happened

In addition to Shlimon's career game, the Owls got 16 points from senior Sandi Purcell.  Freshman forward Jordyn Burke led the Owls with seven rebounds, while Kenzie Bennett pulled down six boards and blocked two shots.

RPI got a 27 point game from Elizabeth Eckhardt, but no other Engineer reached double-figures, though Shaina Iton narrowly missed a double-double with nine points and 11 boards.

The Owls set the tone early, as Shlimon drilled a three on KSC's opening possession.  RPI scored the next nine points, but Shlimon nailed another three to spark a 13-4 run that gave the Owls a 16-13 lead on Bennett's free throw with 1:44 left in the first quarter.  After the Engineers closed within 16-15 on a basket by Kate Goodell, Purcell picked the pocket of Celia Tomlinson and went coast-to-coast for a layup and an 18-15 lead.  The Owls turned defense into offense again at the end of the quarter when Bennett blocked Tomlinson at one end, and Hien Thach corralled the rebound, then found Purcell, who sank a three just ahead of the first quarter buzzer to put the Owls up 21-15.

Keene State clamped down on defense in the second quarter, keeping RPI without a field goal for the first 4:11 of the period, while opening up a 27-16 lead as Purcell and Shlimon made more threes. Purcell's fast break layup gave the Owls a 31-24 lead with 1:20 left, followed by a three with 12 seconds left in the period that sent the Owls into halftime up 34-24.

Eckhardt hit a pair of threes in the early going of the third quarter, but RPI could not get closer than four at any time.  A pair of free throws from Shlimon gave Keene State a 40-33 lead, followed by Abby Thut's turnaround jumper in the post with 1:35 left for a 46-38 advantage.  Eckhardt tried to rally back the Engineers, scoring their first seven points of the fourth quarter to trim the lead to 48-47, but Shlimon had the answer again, connecting on another three with 5:24 left to get the lead back up to four, followed by a layup for a 53-47 lead.

Bennett went 1-for-2 from the line for a 59-52 lead with 20 seconds to go, but RPI got a layup from Lyndsey Stone with 13 seconds left, and following a KSC turnover, Eckhardt sank a three to make it a two point game with seven seconds left.  Purcell knocked down 1-of-2 from the line with four ticks on the clock, and the rebound went out of bounds to the Owls.  KSC inbounded the ball to run out the clock and seal the win.

In the Paint

  • Keene State had by far its best shooting performance from distance, making 11 of 24 shots from long range.  The Owls were a blistering 9-for-14 from three in the first half.
  • The Owls forced 21 RPI turnovers, leading to 16 points in a game that featured just four lead changes.  Keene State had 14 assists on 22 field goals.
  • Shlimon has scored in double-figures in four of her first five career games.

Up Next

  • The Owls travel to Regis College (Mass.) on Wednesday, November 29.  Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m.
  • The Engineers head to Middlebury College on the same evening.