Red Flash Head To NEC Title Beating Pioneers

Sports

LORETTO, PA- Saint Francis got 35 from Jessica Kovatch (Phillipsburg, N.J./Phillipsburg), double-doubles from Maya Wynn (Reisterstown, Md./McDonogh) and Ace Harrison (Baltimore, MD/Digital Harbor (Maryland)) and held Sacred Heart to 13 first-half points in a 78-47 victory in the Northeast Conference semi-final on Thursday night inside DeGol Arena.
 
JOE HAIGH’S REACTION
“I am so happy for our players and the way we played today,” head coach Joe Haigh said. “To come out and play like that, I don’t know how you could play any better, especially defensively.”
 
HOW IT HAPPENED
Saint Francis held Sacred Heart to 10 percent shooting in the first half and just 13 points. The Red Flash ripped off a 14-1 run to start the game and a 10-0 run in the second quarter to put the game away in the opening 20 minutes.
 
FIRST QUARTER RECAP

  • Jess Kovatch hit two threes and had eight of the first 10 points as SFU went up 12-1 and forced a Pioneer timeout
  • Saint Francis kept pouring it on as Kovatch scored 17 points in the first quarter
  • SFU recorded six steals from six different players in the quarter, leading to eight points off turnovers
  • Sacred Heart shot just 2-12 from the field in the quarter
  • SFU led 25-8 after the first quarter

 
SECOND QUARTER RECAP

  • After a Candice Leatherwood free throw, the Red Flash scored the next 10 points
  • Jess Kovatch scored all 10 points, scoring on a three, a three-point play, free throws and a jumper
  • A three by Ace Harrison (Baltimore, MD/Digital Harbor (Maryland)) was followed by free throws from Caitlyn Kroll (Bridgeport, Ohio/Bridgeport), Harrison and Maya Wynn (Reisterstown, Md./McDonogh) as SFU led by as many as 31 in the quarter
  • Sacred Heart was held to 1-17 shooting in the quarter and 3-29 in the half
  • The Red Flash outscored the Pioneers 19-5 in the quarter to lead 44-13 at the half

 
THIRD QUARTER RECAP

  • Kovatch hit a step-back three right out of halftime
  • The Pioneers got threes from Adrianne Hagood and Olivia Dabney
  • The Red Flash answered with a three from Maya Wynn (Reisterstown, Md./McDonogh) and another from Caitlyn Kroll (Bridgeport, Ohio/Bridgeport)
  • A Kovatch lob to Harrison came off a Harrison steal and put the Flash up 34
  • Another Hagood three led to a Asia McCray jumper at the end of the quarter as Sacred Heart scored the final four points of the quarter
  • Saint Francis led 61-32 after three quarters

 
FOURTH QUARTER RECAP

  • The Red Flash got threes from Jessica Kovatch (Phillipsburg, N.J./Phillipsburg) and two from Maya Wynn (Reisterstown, Md./McDonogh) to give SFU their largest lead of the game at 70-32
  • Leah Morrow (Columbus, Ohio/Columbus Africentric) got a pair of steal and scores as she finished with four points, four rebounds and two steals on the night
  • Tykera Carter hit a pair of threes for Sacred Heart down the stretch
  • Both teams would empty their bench late and a lay-up from Allyson Murphy closed out the scoring

 
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

  • The Red Flash forced 20 Sacred Heart turnovers, leading to 28 points
  • Ace Harrison (Baltimore, MD/Digital Harbor (Maryland)) (11-11) and Maya Wynn (Reisterstown, Md./McDonogh) (15-10) each recorded double-doubles
  • Jessica Kovatch (Phillipsburg, N.J./Phillipsburg) hit six more threes and finished with a game-high 35
  • SFU went a perfect 15-15 from the foul line
  • Sacred Heart won the rebounding battle 43-41 led by Abigail Kangudie’s nine
  • The Flash swatted away seven shots, led by Cydney Smith (Port Tobacco, Md./St. Mary’s Ryken)’s four

 
LOOKING AHEAD
The Red Flash and Robert Morris will meet for the third time this season and for the third time in the NEC title game. The teams split in the regular season with each team holding serve on the home court and have split their two title game tilts with RMU winning in 2014 and SFU winning in 2005. Tip time on Sunday is set for 2 p.m. on ESPN U.

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