Women’s basketball defeats Clarion to move to 8-8


During the Christmas break, the Gannon University women´s basketball team played seven games, winning three and losing four.
The seven-game stretch left the Knights with an overall record of 8-8 and a 5-5 record in Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference action going into Wednesday’s 5:30 p.m. game against rival Mercyhurst University at the Hammermill Center.
Wednesday’s game is billed as the Porreco Pride of Erie Game.
Gannon’s first game over the holiday break took place Dec. 9, when the Knights fell to East Stroudsburg, 54-49.
Nicole LaCava paced the Knights with 16 points and 10 rebounds. A week later, Gannon came back with a 79-77 victory over Wheeling Jesuit on the road, as LaCava hit a jumper as time expired and totaled 16 points in the win.
After falling to California University of Pennsylvania, 71-53, on Jan. 3, the Knights rallied to beat Pitt-Johnstown, 76-68, on Jan. 6.
Gannon was powered by Maggie Mitchell´s 21 and LaCava´s 19-point effort.
Two days later, the Knights fell in a heartbreaker at the Hammermill Center as Seton Hill hit a shot with 4.5 seconds remaining to pull out a 79-78 victory. LaCava led Gannon with a career-high 23 points.
On Jan. 10, the Knights fell to the 14th-ranked Edinboro Fighting Scots, 87-53, at the Hammermill Center. Sydney Mitchell led Gannon with a career-high 12 points and eight rebounds.
On Saturday, Gannon traveled to Clarion and held off the Golden Eagles, 50-46, in a PSAC West matchup at Tippin Gymnasium.
LaCava paced the Knights with 19 points and 13 rebounds.
In the win over Wheeling Jesuit last month, the Knights shot 64 percent from the field, making 32 of 50 shots while the host team made 45.9 percent of its shots.
Gannon led for all but six seconds in the game. The Knights also converted on 76.9 percent of their shots from three-point range, which was Gannon´s best mark since Jan. 30, 2003, at Ashland. Maggie Mitchell scored her sixth 20-plus point game of the season with 23 against the Cardinals. Sydney Mitchell recorded a career-high six assists and Chelsea Rourke tallied her 10th double-digit scoring game of the season with a career-high 19 points.
In the win at Pitt-Johnstown, the Knights pulled out to three four-point leads but each time Pitt-Johnstown responded with a bucket of its own. The game was tied at 25 at the 5:41 mark. But the Knights expanded their lead and went to the break with a 41-34 advantage.
LaCava opened the fourth quarter connecting on four free throws, giving Gannon a 63-55 lead with seven minutes remaining. The Knights closed out the final minute-plus and collected a 76-68 victory.
Gannon made a season-high 23 free throws. Maggie Mitchell recorded her seventh 20-point game of the season with 21 points, converting on four-of-six three-pointers.
In the win over Clarion, the Knights took 31 fewer shots than the Golden Eagles, but still won the game. Gannon made 13-of-37 shots while Clarion hit on 18-of-68 shots.
Rourke registered a career-high 12 rebounds and four blocks in the game. It was the first time this season and the first time since the 2013-14 season that the Knights had only one player score in double-figures and win the game.

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