Women’s basketball shines in fourth quarter, opens season with a win

Published by adviser, Author: Ryan Barlow - Sports Editor, Date: November 14, 2015
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Krista Pietropola’s first points in green and white came at a clutch moment Friday evening, sinking a three-pointer with just over two minutes remaining to give The Rock (1-0) the lead in its 68-59 win over Virginia State.

Pietropola, a sophomore transfer out of Youngstown State, explained that the shot came at the perfect opportunity for her to make her mark on the game.

“I knew the girl guarding me had four fouls so I tried to bait her by driving to the hoop,” Pietropola said. “It ended up giving me the wide open shot and I couldn’t pass it up.”

After her first make, Pietropola made another three-pointer and wound up helping SRU close out VSU with 10 points.

Leading the SRU offense was former Division I transfer out of Dayton, junior Lexi Carpenter. Carpenter led all scorers with 22 points, going 7-21 from the field while adding a team-high of five assists.

“This win definitely boosts our confidence,” Carpenter said. “We know what we have and that’s a deeply talented team. Coach McGraw is an amazing coach and knows how to work all of us. If we trust him and do what he says then we’re going to a long way.”

McGraw, who is in his second season as the SRU women’s basketball head coach and first season in the full-time position, was pretty excited about his teams’ performance in its first game.

“Looking at our stat line, the thing that stands out the most to me is that we had 14 assists and just eight turnovers,” McGraw said. “That’s the thing that I am most happy about right now. In my three years with this program, I haven’t seen those numbers.”

Senior guard Erica Aiello was able to chip in seven points of her own along with four assists, while sophomore transfer from Wright State, Ciara Patterson added six points and two assists.

A surprise offensive presence came from senior Megan Hardiman, who scored nine points, including two three-pointers, five rebounds, one block and two steals. Senior forward Sorriyah Ranger led The Rock in rebounds with seven, also contributing four points and a block.

“We held Virginia State to just 15 points in the fourth quarter and held them under 60 points for the entire game. When you do that, your team is going to win games and it’s just that plain and simple,” McGraw said.

For VSU, the Lady Trojans were led by senior forward Wynterra Pittman who scored 18 points in her 26 minutes of play. Junior guard Domonique Hagins led VSU in assists with five.

The Rock women get back in action Saturday afternoon as it hosts Chowan University (1-0) in its second game of the PSAC-CIAA Challenge.

Tipoff is tentatively set for 4 p.m. at Morrow Field House.

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