KEENE, N.H. - The Keene State College women's basketball team scored the first 13 points of the second half and cruised from there, getting into the win column after a 71-46 blowout of Fitchburg State University Saturday afternoon at Spaulding Gymnasium.
- Keene State: 1-6
- Fitchburg State: 1-8
How It Happened
The balanced Owls got 39 points from their starters and 32 from their bench and dominated the Falcons 41-18 in the second half to run away, snapping a seven-game losing streak dating back to last season. Hailey Derosia once again led KSC, as she scored 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting and added seven rebounds, two assists, two blocks, and a steal. Tamra Gonyea was also in double-figures, finishing with 10 points, two assists and two steals. Jordyn Burke chipped in nine points, six rebounds, two assists, one steal and one block, and eight other Owls found the scoring column. Fitchburg was paced by Angelina Marazzi, who made 4-of-5 from long range and scored a game-high 19 points, but no other Falcon was in double-figures.
Keene State never trailed in the contest and shot 54% in the opening 20 minutes, but only carried a two-point lead into the locker room after committing 15 turnovers in the half. That changed after the break, as KSC only committed five miscues, and thus ran away with the victory. The Owls made 8-of-11 (73%) shots in the fourth quarter alone and 49% (26-for-53) for the game, while Fitchburg finished just 12-of-47 (26%) overall.
Triples from Kenzie Bennett and Derosia in the opening 1:13 had KSC off and running right away with a 6-0 lead, but as mentioned, the visitors hung around, scoring eight of the next 13 to get within 11-8 on Marazzi's three just over four minutes in. Gonyea and Bennett both scored inside to push the lead back up to seven, and Lilly Shlimon's three at the 3:27 mark kept it an 18-13 Owl lead. The Falcons drew within 20-16 after one, and eventually extended their run to 7-0 nearly three minutes into the second quarter, tying the game at 20 after Emma Thomson's free throw with 7:20 left in the first half. Derosia scored five straight Owl points to help the home team go back in front 25-22 and, later, two layups and a free throw from Arianna Hebert made it 30-24 with just over a minute to go. Four free throws in the final 52 seconds helped Fitchburg State climb back within two (30-28) at halftime.
The second half was never a contest, as Gonyea drove to the bucket and scored 11 seconds in, kickstarting a 13-0 burst for the Owls that ballooned their lead to 43-28, with the home team finding much success attacking the basket, punctuated by Burke's and-one at the 4:04 mark of the third quarter. KSC forced seven FSU turnovers in the period and held them to just one field goal and four points. Three free throws by Samantha Adamson over the final 1:19 had KSC ahead 46-32 entering the fourth.
In the final 10 minutes, it remained all Owls, who went on a 12-1 burst over the opening 3:31 to remove any doubt. A three by Gonyea and layups by Leah Pelkey and Burke pushed the lead to 20, and it later became 58-33 at the 6:29 mark after consecutive buckets by Gonyea and Derosia. Katie Martineau connected on a pair of long-distance tries over the final four minutes, and Zoey Luopa scored her first collegiate points, as KSC built the lead to as many as 30 while cruising to their first win of the season.
Inside the Paint
- The Owls' 71 points and 49% shooting in the contest were season-highs.
- KSC capitalized on Fitchburg's 21 turnovers, scoring 33 points off the miscues, while the Falcons scored just 14 off 20 Owl turnovers. The home team also had wide edges of 38-10 in points in the paint and 32-15 in bench points.
- Keene State has won all six head-to-head meetings with Fitchburg, including a 66-39 victory in Massachusetts last February 11.
- The Owls open up conference play with a visit to Vermont to take on Castleton University (5-1) on Wednesday, December 4 at 5:30 pm.
- Fitchburg State hosts Suffolk University on the same night for a 6:00 pm tip-off.