February 28, 2009

Women's Basketball Defeats Central Connecticut, 79-68, On Senior Day

HAMDEN, Conn. – Mandy Pennewell (West Chester, Pa.) posted her second double-double of the season and Erin Kerner (Erie, Pa.) scored a game-high 23 points as the Quinnipiac University women's basketball team defeated Central Connecticut State, 79-68, on Senior Day at the TD Banknorth Sports Center. Pennewell scored 16 points and pulled down a career-high 12 rebounds as she helped the Bobcats improve their record to 17-10 overall and 10-7 in Northeast Conference play. The loss drops the Blue Devils' mark to 17-11 overall and 12-5 in league play. With the win, Quinnipiac sweeps the season series with CCSU and pushes its winning streak to 17 games against the Blue Devils.

Kerner's 23 points came on 7-of-17 shooting from the floor, while connecting on two of her five attempts from three-point range. Pennewell shot 6-of-17 in the game, with four field goals coming from behind the three-point line. She also matched her season high with four assists in the game. Senior Brianna Rooney (Guilford, Conn.) also had 16 points in the win, while adding three assists.

"Over the last three years, I have watched this team and program grow," said Head Coach Tricia Fabbri. "I am very proud of the senior class for all the success that they have earned."

A three-pointer by Central's Leanne Crockett a minute and a half into the game gave the Blue Devils a 3-2 advantage. It would be the last time CCSU would have any lead as Quinnipiac's high-tempo offense would take over in the first. The Bobcats would lead by as many as 12 in the first half on the strength of Pennewell's 10 opening-half points. The senior guard also pulled down six of her rebounds in the first, while she dished out three assists in the first 20 minutes of play helping her team take an 11-point lead, 36-25, into halftime.

The Bobcats began the second half on an 18-9 run with the three senior guards combining for 16 of those points. After being held to just two points in the first, Rooney scored 14 points in the second half, including six in the first three and a half minutes of play. Quinnipiac would push the lead to as much as 20 points midway through the final period, but Central fought back to within seven in the final minutes.

Blue Devils' guard Shontice Simmons led the way for her team with 16 points. Ten of her points came in the final stretch to help Central cut the deficit to seven with 25 seconds remaining, but it was not enough as late free-throws helped the Bobcats secure the 11-point victory, 79-68.

For the game, Quinnipiac outshot CCSU 44.4 percent (28-63) to 39.3 percent (24-61). The Bobcats enjoyed slightly better success from the free-throw line, connecting on 17-of-22 attempts, while the Blue Devils hit 15 of their 22 attempts from the charity stripe. Quinnipiac edged CCSU, outrebounding its opponent 41-37.

The Bobcats return to action Monday, Mar. 2 in their final regular-season game of the season when they play host to Wagner. The teams will tip-off at the TD Banknorth Sports Center at 7 p.m.