Holy Cross Edges Brown, 81-74 in Final Non-Conference Game

Providence, RI- Despite Sheila Dixon's (Schenectady, NY) earning her second double-double of the season with 19 points and 10 rebounds, Holy Cross prevailed on Monday night on the strength of 59 percent shooting from the field to defeat the Brown women's basketball team 81-74 at the Pizzitola Sports Center. The loss drops the Bears to 9-6 overall while the win improved Holy Cross to 10-8.

Both squads had four out of their five starters score in double figures tonight, as senior co-captain Aileen Daniels (Waldwick, NJ) was Brown's next leading scorer behind Dixon with 17 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the floor.  Junior guard/forward Lindsay Nickel (Los Altos, CA) and sophomore point guard Lauren Clarke (Colts Neck, NJ) both added 14 points, and senior Hannah Passafuime (Soquel, CA) put in six points and handed out a career-high seven assists for the Bears this evening.

In a half that saw seven lead changes and was tied three times, the Bears played a solid 20 minutes shooting 46 percent from the floor and went 43 percent from beyond the arc. However, the Crusaders were able to head into the locker room at halftime with a 43-35 lead over the Bears by shooting 59 percent from the field and 55 percent from the trey to earn the advantage.

After a three pointer by the Crusaders Alex Smith, her first of three in the first stanza, Holy Cross gained a 16-12 lead with 11:08 remaining in the half. Holy Cross scored the next six unanswered points to burst out to a 24-10 advantage, but the Bears roared back with a 13-0 run over the next five minutes to top the Crusaders, 27-24, with 4:56 on the clock.

Holy Cross answered right back with a three pointer by Alex Smith to even the score at the 4:42 mark, and ended the half on a 15-8 run to head into the locker room with a 42-35 edge over Brown.

The Bears started the second half outscoring the Crusaders 8-2 to gain a 45-44 after just four minutes of play, but Holy Cross built back up its lead to seven after a jumper by Kelly Hamner with 13:03 on the clock.

Then, Lindsay Nickel (Los Altos, CA) put in a layup and Dixon sank two free throws to cut the deficit to three, but Holy Cross shot its lead back up to 10 at the 9:58 mark.

The Bears continued to chip away at their deficit, but the Crusaders continued to make their shots to remain with a 10-point cushion, 75-65, with 3:18 left in the game. The Crusaders extended it to 11 with just 45 seconds left on the clock, but the Bears made their final push with three pointers by Nickel and Clarke to cut the deficit to five with 27 seconds left, 79-74, but two free throws by Alex Smith gave Holy Cross an 81-74 lead to win the game.

The Crusaders shot 60 percent in the second half as both teams were even in scoring 39-39. Meredith Ward led the offense with 16 points, followed by Alex Smith with 15, Amy Lepley with 14 and Emily Parker with 10.

The Bears will now travel to New Haven to complete their home-and-home series with Yale on Friday, Jan. 20 for a 7 p.m. tip-off.