Feb. 12, 2004
PHILADELPHIA, PA. - The Bonnies fought back from a 12-point deficit, but couldn't stop La Salle down the stretch, falling 76-65 at Tom Gola Arena this evening.
Following an 11-2 St. Bonaventure run that tied the score at 52, La Salle went on a 15-4 streak to take a 67-56 lead with two minutes remaining. Explorers' Meghan Wilkinson capped the run with back-to-back threes.
A layup by junior Caitlin Crist brought the Bonnies within eight, 70-62, with 1:01 remaining, but La Salle made six free throws over the final minute to secure the victory.
St. Bonaventure entered the half down six, 33-27, but scored the first basket of the second stanza on a layup by freshman forward Audrey Latendresse.
However, over the next two minutes, La Salle extended its lead to 12, 41-29, using an 8-0 run.
With La Salle up nine with 12:18 left in the game, senior Becky Valenti sparked an 11-2 run to for St. Bonaventure to tie the score at 52 with 7:11 remaining. Valenti accounted for six of the Bonnies' 11 points during the run.
The Bonnies, who shot 43 percent from the field (23-53), had three players score in double figures led by Merlo's 15 points on 5-7 shooting from behind the arc. Merlo also added a career-high seven rebounds to go with three assists. Senior Jade Humble scored 13 points, seven of which from the free-throw line, to go with four rebounds and a block. Senior Lyndsey Maurer scored 10 points to go with a career-high seven rebounds and five assist. Junior guard Stefanie Collins sat out tonight's contest, recovering from a sprained ankle she suffered Sunday versus Rhode Island.
St. Bonaventure outrebounded La Salle 39-23, but committed 18 turnovers to the Explorers' five.
La Salle's freshman forward Crista Ricketts led all scorers with 19 points.
With the loss, St. Bonaventure fell to 7-15 overall and 3-8 in A-10 play. La Salle improves to 5-7 in conference play and 12-10 overall.
The Bonnies remain in Philadelphia to take on Temple on Saturday for a 4:30 p.m. tip off.