LORETTO, PA- The Red Flash sent their three seniors out on a high note and secured at least a share of the NEC regular season for the ninth time in a 86-55 triumph over Wagner on senior day inside DeGol Arena.
With the win, the Red Flash tie Robert Morris atop the Northeast Conference standings at 16-2. Because the Red Flash and Colonials split in the regular season and because of the other ties in the NEC standings, RPI will be used to determine seeding. Heading into Sunday, the Red Flash were 21 places higher than Robert Morris meaning in all likelihood, SFU will be the number one seed in the NEC tournament starting Wednesday. An official determination won’t be available until tonight or early tomorrow after all NCAA games finish on Sunday.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Red Flash held Wagner without a point for over three minutes in the second quarter as Saint Francis opened up a double-digit lead on the Seahawks. SFU forced 31 turnovers and led by as many as 39.
FIRST QUARTER RECAP
- The Red Flash scored the first seven points of the game capped by a Karson Swogger (Bellwood, PA/Bellwood-Antis) three
- Wagner answered back with the next eight points to take their only lead of the game
- Swogger went on a personal 5-0 run as SFU began to pull away midway through the quarter
- A Kovatch three pushed the lead to eight and another Swogger bucket kept it there as SFU led 27-19 after the first quarter
SECOND QUARTER RECAP
- Wagner was able to keep the lead at eight until another Swogger three pushed the lead to 11, SFU would hold a double-digit lead the rest of the night
- The three sparked a 10-0 run for the Red Flash highlighted by a three-point play from Leah Morrow (Columbus, Ohio/Columbus Africentric)
- Caitlyn Kroll (Bridgeport, Ohio/Bridgeport) and Kovatch each hit threes to push the lead over 20 for the first time
- The Red Flash closed the half on a 6-0 run thanks to another Swogger three and three free-throws from Kovatch
- SFU led 55-31 at the half
THIRD QUARTER RECAP
- Kovatch’s first three of the half broke the NEC overall record for threes in a career, held by Tristan Blackwood of CCSU, Kovatch now sits at 329 career threes and counting
- Saint Francis put the game out of reach with a 13-2 run that featured threes from Maya Wynn (Reisterstown, Md./McDonogh), Jill Falvey (Lincroft, N.J./Middletown South) and Caitlin Kroll as SFU led by 36, forcing a Wagner timeout
- The teams would trade baskets through the rest of the quarter as SFU would take a 74-38 lead into the fourth, the Red Flash outscored Wagner 19-7 in the frame
FOURTH QUARTER RECAP
- Five-points from Cydney Smith (Port Tobacco, Md./St. Mary’s Ryken), including a three, help SFU build its largest lead of the night at 39, 82-43
- Swogger continued her career night with another three, her fifth of the night and a put back later in the quarter gave her a game high and career high 23
- SFU was able to get each senior an ovation as they subbed out over the course of the quarter
- A pair of Swogger free throws late capped her career night and rounded out the game’s scoring
- Saint Francis’ 21 wins are the most in a regular season since the 2003-04 season when they won 22 games.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
- The Red Flash put three in double figures, led by Swogger’s career high 23
- Saint Francis had 17 steals led by Ace Harrison (Baltimore, MD/Digital Harbor (Maryland))’s seven
- Wagner won the rebounding battle 42-40, led by Sierra Clark who had 10, Maya Wynn (Reisterstown, Md./McDonogh) had seven for SFU to lead the home team
- SFU dished out 21 assists on 29 baskets, led by Harrison who had six assists
Presuming the Red Flash are the one seed (they had a 112 to 134 RPI advantage on RMU), they will host Fairleigh Dickinson on Wednesday night in the NEC quarterfinal. Tip time will be set for 5pm and can be seen on NEC Front Row and ESPN3.