Iona WBB Defense Stifles Saint Peters, 55-31.jpg

Iona WBB Defense Stifles Saint Peters, 55-31

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NEW ROCHELLE, NY — The Iona College women’s basketball team defeated Saint Peter’s 55-31 at the Yanitelli Center on Thursday evening. It is the fewest points the Gaels have allowed versus any opponent since Feb. 1, 1998 against Marist. It is the lowest point-total for a Gael adversary in a non-home contest since Mercy scored 28 in the 1974-75 season.

The 31 points allowed are the ninth-fewest in a conference game in history and the fewest since Manhattan scored 26 points vs Fairfield on Feb. 11, 2015

Junior Alexis Lewis collected her second straight double-double with 19 points and 10 rebounds. She has 11 double-doubles thus far this season. As the Maroon & Gold’s leading scorer, Lewis shot 7-for-13 from the floor and 4-of-7 from beyond the arc. Rookie Toyosi Abiola was the only other player in double-figures with 11 points. She and sophomore Amelia Motz each had a team-high three assists.

The Gaels were without junior Treyanna Clay for the first time this season. Motz started in her stead, and in addition to her three helpers, she contributed six points in six rebounds. Freshman Rebekah Justice blocked a career-high four shots in 18 minutes.

The defense started early for Iona. It forced four turnovers in the first five minutes which allowed for a quick 8-2 start. Saint Peter’s was held scoreless for two four-plus minute stretches while Lewis hit three early trifectas as she scored 11 Iona’s 14 first quarter points.

The Peacocks tried to switch things up in the second quarter by not beginning the frame with any of their starters. While both teams struggled from the floor at the onset, Eggleston broke a nearly four-minute scoreless stretch with her second layup of the quarter. Her bucket catapulted Iona on a late 6-0 run over the final 1:50 before halftime.

The Maroon & Gold held a 27-13 lead at intermission. It’s the first fewest an opponent has scored in any half against Iona this season. Lewis was well on her way to a double-double after the first 20 minutes with 11 points and 7 boards at the break.

Iona began the second half on a 10-0 run and back-to-back threes from Lewis and Abiola made the score 42-15 midway through the third. The Peacocks scored three points in the third quarter on just one made free throw and one made field goal. They shot 1-for-14 in the quarter.

Saint Peter’s committed 20 turnovers which led directly to 21 points for Iona. The Peacocks shot 25.5% from the floor and 30.0% from beyond the arc. Seven different Gaels had at least one steal. Freshman Adrienna DiGioia, Motz and Lewis each had two swipes.

Iona’s next game is on Saturday, Feb. 17 against Manhattan. Prior to the 1 PM tip-off, the Gael coaching staff will honor lone senior Kristin Mahoney. Be sure to arrive at the Hynes Center early for the ceremony which is scheduled to begin at 12:50 PM.