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HAMDEN, Conn. – Gillian Abshire (Washington, D.C.) put the Bobcats ahead for good with a pair of late free-throws and set a new program record with 14 assists in the game to lead the Quinnipiac University women's basketball team past American, 68-66, on Saturday afternoon at the TD Bank Sports Center. With the win, the Bobcats improve to 2-3 on the season and extend their current home winning-streak to 17 games dating back to last season.
Brittany McQuain (Independence,Mo.) finished with a double double with 16 points and 12 rebounds after being honored prior to the game for scoring her 1000th career point. McQuain also moved into sole possession of fifth place in school history in rebounding passing Kim Misiasek '01 (827). Jasmine Martin (Sicklerville,NJ) finished with 14 points and 6 rebounds while Samantha Guastella (Red Bank,NJ) finished with 14 points and went 4-7 from beyond the arc. With the victory, Quinnipiac Head Coach Tricia Fabbri collected career win number 275.
Quinnipiac held the advantage in the first half in points in the paint (18-12). They held the advantage in rebounding (26-19) in the first half as well leading to a 35-31 halftime lead. McQuain had 10 points and six rebounds in the first half on 5-8 shooting. Abshire had eight assists in the first half alone which put her just four assists away from tying the school record in a single game.
The first half was very tightly contested with the score being tied on seven different occasions and the lead changing 10 different times. With 1:26 remaining in the first half, Abshire found Guastella at the top of the key and Guastella knocked down the three to give the Bobcats their largest lead of the first half 33-29.
Alexis Dobbs hit a jumper with 21 seconds left to cut the Bobcats lead to two. With five seconds left in the half Morgan Manz (Southbury,Conn.) corralled an offensive rebound and hit a layup with one second remaining in the half to give the Bobcats a 35-31 lead.
Martin started off the second half for the Bobcats with 19:24 left by hitting a three off an Abshire assist to put the Bobcats up 38-31.American would not go away as Alexis Dobbs hit a three with 15:04 left to bring the Eagles within four.
After Quinnipiac and American traded baskets the Eagles were finally able to take the lead with 5:24 left as Geleisa George hit a layup to put American up 55-54. George hit a layup 33 seconds later to put American up 57-54.
With 2:53 left Martin pulled the Bobcats even at 61. With 2:23 left Maria Napolitano (Cincinnati, Ohio) hit a clutch three to give the Bobcats a 64-61 lead. Not to be outdone Arron Zimmerman hit a clutch three of her own to pull American even with Quinnipiac at 64 with 1:13 left.
With 35 seconds left Geleisa George hit a layup to push the score to 66-66. Quinnipiac pulled down a big offensive rebound with eight seconds to go and the Bobcats called a timeout to set up a play.
Abshire was fouled with four seconds remaining and would head to the line with a one and one upcoming. Abshire hit the first end of the one and one to give the Bobcats the lead. She hit the next free throw to give Quinnipiac a 68-66 lead.
After a timeout American had the ball under their own basket. American attempted to push the ball up court to set up the game tying shot, but Shaina Earle (South Orange,NJ) stole the ball and dribbled out the clock as the Bobcats went on to win 68-66.
Quinnipiac is back on the road on Tuesday as they take on Missouri State. Tip-off is scheduled for 1 pm.
Fans interested in purchasing tickets for the 2013-14 campaign can call the QU Ticket Office at 203-582-3905, visit the official website of Quinnipiac athletics, www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com or make a trip to the TD Bank Sports Center Ticket Office.
Student-Athletes, parents and fans can download the 2013-14 QU Athletics schedules to your laptop and mobile devices for free by clicking in the iCalendar link at the bottom of each sport's homepage or the master schedule page. Fans can also follow Quinnipiac Athletics on Facebook and Twitter (@QUAthletics) for all of the latest news and updates.