Box Score (PDF)
ALBANY – Albany started and finished strong, withstanding a Bonnies rally effort to pull away in the fourth quarter for a 69-52 win Sunday afternoon at SEFCU Arena.
The Great Danes improved to 8-2 on the season while St. Bonaventure now stands at 5-7 overall.
The six-time defending America East champions started the game strong, launching a 16-4 run to seize control from the tip.
St. Bonaventure bounced back, however, slowly chipping away at the Great Danes lead as the Bonnies had some luck beyond the arc with a pair of 3-pointers by Danielle Migliore and one each from Mariah Ruff and Rhianna Council before the break to get back into the game.
After Ruff sidestepped a defender and drained a jumper from the corner, the Bonnies were within 23-19 midway through the second quarter. Albany would ultimately take a 30-24 advantage to halftime.
Bona continued to fight as the second half got underway, using five straight points from Migliore off a trey and a running one-hander to close to a 34-32 score four minutes into the half. Each time the Bonnies would have an opportunity to close within a bucket, however, Albany would push ahead once more, often by working to the line in the third quarter to extend the advantage back out to 46-37 with two minutes left in the third.
The Bonnies would again counterpunch, though, using free throws of their own from Ruff and Jalisha Terry to move to a 46-43 score heading for the fourth quarter.
Albany seized control for good, however, by embarking on an 11-2 sprint to start the fourth quarter, taking a 55-45 advantage following a four-point play by Jessica Fequiere. In all, Albany used a 23-9 scoring margin during the fourth quarter to put the game on ice.
Fequiere and Makenzie Trpcic proved to be a dynamic one-two punch for the Great Danes, combining for 41 points with Trpcic also handing out nine assists.
The Bonnies struggled from the floor, shooting 16-for-57 (28 percent) while Albany went 24-for-66 for 36 percent. The Great Danes owned the boards with a 52-34 advantage in rebounding, using that edge for a 22-8 scoring margin in second chance points.
The Bonnies will take to the court for game action once more before breaking for Christmas, making the trip to Hofstra for a Thursday afternoon contest. That game is slated for a 2 p.m. start time.
GAME NOTES: Ruff continued to climb in the Bonnies all-time record books, taking over sixth place in career assists with 344 after entering the day sharing the spot with Julie James (1981-85). She also passed Roni Hergenroeder (1987-91) for 19th in Bonnies scoring with 1,084 career points … Rhianna Council earned her first career start … Abigail Johnson paced the Bonnies in rebounding with a career high 10 rebounds including five on the offensive glass.
For the latest news on St. Bonaventure athletics, stay connected on social media. Follow the Bonnies on Twitter @Go_Bonnies and get women's basketball updates @BonniesWBB. Keep up with the Bonnies on Facebook /GoBonnies and on Instagram @GoBonnies.