NEW ROCHELLE, NY — The Iona women’s basketball program tamed the Rider Broncs Friday evening, earning their first home win of the 2015-16 season, 59-46. Junior Marina Lizarazu, and senior Aaliyah Robinson combined for 36 points as the Gaels improved to 2-0 in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play.
The Maroon & Gold held Rider to 33.3% shooting from the floor, and allowed just two three-point field goals to be made. Iona managed to hit 40.8% of their shots, including eight from long range. Two of those beyond-the-arc buckets from sophomore Philecia Gilmore, while five came via the release of Robinson.
With 4:49 remaining in the third quarter, the Broncs gained a one point, 23-22 edge. Gilmore responded by scoring eight straight points, propelling the Gaels to a three point lead with 2:36 remaining. Despite the offensive push and swing of momentum, Iona would enter the fourth quarter trailing by one, 33-34.
The Broncs were able to overcome a four point halftime deficit by taking control of the paint; Iona was outmuscled in the paint by a 10-0 margin in the third, and outscored by points off turnovers and second chances, 6-0, and 4-0
The final ten minutes was a great bounce back effort as the Maroon & Gold went a perfect six-for-six from the floor. Rider missed its first nine shots to open up the final frame. Such a combination allowed for an 11-0 Gaels run, which was culminated by Robinson hitting back-to-back triples to put the Gaels up 45-34 with 5:24 to go.
Lizarazu led Iona with 19 points on six of nine shooting; the Madrid, Spain native added in five rebounds and six assists during her 39 minutes.
The Gaels were held scoreless in second chance point opportunities for the game, but Iona scored 12 points of 19 forced Rider turnovers.
Robin Perkins led the Broncs with 19 points, and Taylor Wentzel added on 11 for Head Coach Lynn Mulligan’s team.
Iona will return to non-conference action on Wednesday, Dec. 9 when they travel to take on the Scarlett Knights of Rutgers. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:00 PM.