SPRINGFIELD >> All went well for host Mount Saint Joseph Tuesday night — for about a half.
But in the second half, the visiting Gwynedd Mercy Monarchs outscored their hosts by 14 points en route to a 38-32 victory that stunned the Magic and demonstrated why the Monarchs just can’t be counted out when it comes to the ACAA race.
“I give Mount a lot of credit,” said winning coach Tom Lonergan after the visitors overcame a five-point halftime deficit to win easily. “They stormed out of the gate the last time we played them, and they did it again tonight.
“The difference is, our team kept its composure and we got them.”
Lonergan also praised the work of senior Carly Heineman, whose leadership led the way for the winners, and the scoring of Maura Conroy, who hit six straight free throws down the stretch to put the visitors in position to hang on for the win.
Early on, the home team did the scoring. And behind six first-quarter points from Grace Nielkelski was able to build the aforementioned five-point halftime bulge.
But the visitors maintained their poise, and in the second half made their move.
It began with a 5-4 advantage in the third quarter.
But by the time the fourth quarter kicked in, the visitors were in command.behind a smothering defense and the free-throw shooting of Conroy.
“It starts with putting the ball in the bucket, which we didn’t do in the second half, and handling their pressure, which we didn’t do well,” said Mount head coach Jim Moynan. “Give Gwynedd credit, but that’s something we’re going to have to work on in the next couple of days.”
GWYNEDD MERCY 38, MOUNT ST. JOSEPH 32
Gwynedd-Mercy (38) – Maura Conroy 3 9-10 15; Bridget Casey 0 1-2 1; Carly Heineman 2 2-3 6; A. Martin 1 0-1 3; Georgia Cattie 1 0-0 2; Regan Flannery 0 0-0 0; Kailey Griffin 2 1-4 5. Totals _ 9 13-20 38.
Mount St. Joseph (32) – Maggie Zipfel 1 0-0 2; Lauren Vesey 1 0-0 3; Kelly Rothenberg 3 0-0 7; Taylor Sistrunk 2 1-2 5; Grace Nielkelski 3 0-0 8; Deidre Regan 1 1-3 3; Megan Dodaro 3 1-2 7. Totals _ 12 2-5 32.
3-point goals: Vesey; Rothenberg 2; Nielkelski 2; Martin.
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