#23 Women’s Basketball falls at St. Michael’s, 62-57

COLCHESTER, Vt. – The No. 23 ranked Saint Anselm College women's basketball team suffered a 62-57 setback at Saint Michael's College on Tuesday night in Northeast-10 Conference action at the Ross Sports Center in Colchester, Vt.

Box Score

Candace Andrews scored 18 points for the second-straight game to lead the Hawks (3-1, 1-1 NE-10), while also adding three rebounds, three assists and four steals. Caitlyn Abela added 13 points and four rebounds, with Kaila Duarte grabbing a game-high 12 boards. Emma Daly chipped in eight points off the bench for the Hawks.

Sara Messler scored inside to give the Hawks an 11-7 lead with 3:55 to play, but Cassandra Falone and Indira Evora sandwiched threes around a Leah Spencer jumper for an 8-0 run that gave the Purple Knights (3-2, 3-0 NE-10) a 15-11 advantage. After Clairee Putnam hit two free throws to tie the game, Saint Michael's Emily Ferreri canned another triple to keep the home team in front 18-15. Candace Andrews scored inside before the end of the quarter to make it an 18-17 game after one.

Emma Daly opened the second quarter with a three-pointer to put the Hawks back in front before Kaila Duarte tied the game at 24-24 with 6:28 to play. The two teams proceeded to trade baskets until a layup from Saint Michael's Leah Spencer put the Purple Knights in front 33-28 with 1:30 remaining.

Andrews answered with another score inside, but Taylor Miller scored for Saint Michael's to keep it a five point game at 35-30. With time running down, Candace Andrews converted another layup before the horn as the Hawks entered the half trailing 35-32.

Ali Glennon pulled the Hawks to within one with a layup early in the second half, but Saint Michael's answered with a 6-0 run capped by an Indira Evora basket that forced a Saint Anselm timeout with 7:18 to play. Samantha Delaney extended it to eight-straight points with a layup out of the timeout, but Candace Andrews ended the run with a steal and score to cut the deficit to 43-36.

After a two minute scoring drought, Caitlyn Abela converted an offensive rebound to make it a 43-38 game with 3:53 to play, but Evora answered on the other end for the Purple Knights to keep it a seven-point game. Emma Daly and Abela converted back-to-back layups before Daly buried a triple to cap a 7-0 run that tied the game at 45-all and forced a Saint Michael's timeout.

Out of the break, Andrews knocked down a jumper to put the Hawks on top 47-45, but the Purple Knights scored five points in the final 28 seconds of the period to take a 50-47 lead into the final quarter.

Saint Michael's built an eight-point lead at 57-49 with 4:30 to play, and Candace Andrews buried a jumper on the next Saint Anselm possession to cut the Purple Knights' lead to 57-51. After a steal by Putnam, Andrews hit a layup, but Maddy Bennett responded for Saint Michael's with a layup to keep it a six-point game at 59-53 and only 3:14 remaining.

Kaila Duarte went 1-for-2 at the charity stripe to get the Hawks back to within five, and Clairee Putnam knocked down a three to make it a 59-57 game with 1:07 remaining. The Hawks were forced to foul, and St. Mike's Leah Spencer only went 1-for-2 at the line, giving the Hawks a chance to tie the game.

After a Saint Anselm timeout with only 10 seconds remaining, the Hawks drew up a play for Caitlyn Abela, but the senior missed the potential game-tying three-pointer. Spencer grabbed the rebound and was immediately fouled, knocking down two free throws to seal the game for the Purple Knights, 62-57.

The Hawks shot 34.3% (24-of-70) from the field, while the home team knocked down 23-of-56 (41.1%) of their shots on the night. At the charity stripe, the Hawks hit 5-of-8 (62.5%) free throws compared to 11-of-15 (73.3%) for Saint Michael's. Saint Anselm won the rebounding battle 42-39, but committed 18 turnovers to just 14 for the Purple Knights.

Saint Anselm is back in action on Sunday afternoon when they host Stonehill College at 1:30 p.m. at Stoutenburgh Gymnasium.

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