Women's Hoop Earns First GNAC Win of Season

Women's Hoop Earns First GNAC Win of Season

WESTON, Mass. - The Regis College women's basketball team was able to hold off the Norwich Cadets early Saturday afternoon in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) contest at Higgins Court, 63-60.

Three members of the Pride finished in double figures, as sophomore Nikki Bitinaitis (Cromwell, Conn.) led the group with 17 points and Valerie Martin (Derry, N.H.) ended the game with 12 points and four assists to go with five rebounds.  Sam D'Angelo (Woburn, Mass.) also finished in double figures with 10 points while shooting 3-for-5 from the field.

The game started with Maura Russell (Braintree, Mass.) scoring the first of her six points by knocking down a three-pointer 24 seconds into the game. The Pride would lead 6-2, but a stretch of scoring by Norwich, starting with a three-pointer from the Cadets' Riley Bennett, would put Norwich up by six five minutes into the game. The first quarter would see the teams battle to take control, however no one would have a substantial advantage as the first quarter concluded with the Pride holding a two-point lead, 18-16.

In the second quarter, a 10-0 run helped to push the Cadets ahead, propelling them to an 11-point lead before half. The Pride would score twice before the break with Bitinaitis sinking a three-pointer, followed by a jumper from Taylor Iorfino (Monroe, Conn.) that shrunk the Cadet lead to six.

The Pride would continue to whittle down the lead until a free throw by Bitinaitis would tie the game at 35 with 6:20 remaining in the third quarter. The game would once again go back and forth with the third quarter of play concluding with the Pride leading, 49-48.

With the clock winding down in the fourth quarter and the Pride trailing 58-56, Russell knocked down a three-point jump shot, sparking seven consecutive points for Regis to close out the game with the victory.

Norwich (6-8, 1-2 GNAC) had three players in double figures with Bennett being their leading scorer with 18 points.  They would also have 36 rebounds to beat out Regis on the boards, with the Pride having 35. 

Regis (5-10, 1-2 GNAC) will kick off a three-game road swing next week when it travels to Anna Maria on Thursday, Jan. 17, for a 7 p.m. tipoff. The Pride will next play at home Saturday, Jan. 26, when the Wildcats of Johnson & Wales come to Higgins Court.