Friday, December 19, 2014

Coach Abe Gets Win #100 at UAlbany as 26-2 Great Danes Streak Leads to 62-36 Victory at Pepperdine - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UA Sports

MALIBU, Calif. – The UAlbany women’s basketball team held Pepperdine without a basket for a span of 17:34, using a 26-2 run to beat back the Waves 62-36, earning Katie Abrahamson-Henderson’s 100 victory with the program.

“I am happy for Sarah [Royals] and Margarita [Rosario] and all the young women that have been part of this,” said Abrahamson-Henderson on her 100th win. “It is humbling.”

UAlbany (6-4) held Pepperdine (5-6) without a field goal in the final 5:34 of the first period, extending that mark well into the second half.  UAlbany, from the first to second half, went on a 26-2 run, later extending to a 32-4 run, to build up a 29-point lead.  UAlbany never trailed in the contest.

“Defense was the key today,” said Abrahamson-Henderson. “Being focused on our gameplan was key; our gameplan was to put pressure on the ball, and we wanted to press and trap all game.”

The Great Danes shot 51.2% in the game, holding Pepperdine to just nine field goals and 25% on shooting.  UAlbany did not allow any Wave to score more than seven points and had its strongest defensive performance since February 19th, 2014, when the Great Danes defeated Binghamton 86-35.

Shereesha Richards had her 10th-consecutive double digit scoring game, earning 16 points, six steals and five rebounds.  Imani Tate shot 6-9 from the field for 15 points, four assists and seven rebounds, while Zakiya Saunders went 5-7 on field goals for 10 points.  With an assist to Richards 2:43 in, Sarah Royals extended her streak to 75-straight games with an assist.

“It is always great to come out and get a win, my teammates played hard and we got a great victory,” said Richards. “It was important to get a victory after coming all the way out to California.”

For Pepperdine, Kim Jacobs and Olivia Ogwumike each scored seven points.  Tessa Emerson scored four points and grabbed seven rebounds.

At the start, UAlbany focused on attacking the paint plus forced turnovers the other side.  With Tiana-Jo Carter and Richards each contributing four points, the Great Danes built an early 10-4 lead.

Pepperdine quick fired a couple shots and pulled to within one at 10-9.  Tate stopped the run with a free throw; on the next possession, UAlbany pushed in transition and found Tate for the pull-up at the line.  Each side added one basket in the following four minutes as UAlbany led 15-11 with under eight minutes in the first half.

At 16-12, Pepperdine hit a couple of baskets to tie the game, leading UAlbany to call a timeout and regroup.

Saunders buried a 15-footer on the elbow out of the timeout to start a run for UAlbany.  Again UAlbany went to the paint, with Richards following with a pair of layups and Royals adding a floater.  Before the half expired, Saunders hit another long jumper at the buzzer, capping the streak at 10-1 as UAlbany did not allow a Pepperdine field goal in the period’s final 5:43.  UAlbany took a 26-17 lead into the locker room.

Tate extended the run for UAlbany with a couple of free throws.  After a Pepperdine free throw, Saunders hit a jumper, followed by Richards with a swipe and score and one. 

The UAlbany zone defense continued to force long shots and misses for Pepperdine.  Tate and Richards added baskets, with Royals adding the corner three for a quick seven points.  After two Pepperdine free throws, the UAlbany zone continued to hold its opponent without a basket as the Great Danes tallied a 32-4 run to make it 48-22.

Later, UAlbany went up 51-22 off an elbow three from Margarita Rosario.  Kim Jacobs netted a jumper with 8:10 left in the 2nd as UAlbany held Pepperdine without a field goal for a span of 17:35.

After Carter hit a layup, Pepperdine went on a 9-1 streak.  UAlbany held off Pepperdine the rest of way, holding the Waves without points for the final three minutes.  Jessica Fequiere had three points off a free throw and a transition layup as UAlbany finished with a 6-0 run to win the game 62-36.

UAlbany will stay in California and take on Cal State Fullerton on Sunday, December 21st at 4 p.m. ET (1 p.m. PT) to finish the six-game road trip.

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