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The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

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Woods saves the day

Senior+Chelsea+Woods+looks+to+pass+%28Photo+by+Luke+Malanga+20%29.
Senior Chelsea Woods looks to pass (Photo by Luke Malanga ’20).

Women’s basketball ends regular season with a win

The St. Joe’s women’s basketball team capped their regular season in thrilling fashion as senior Chelsea Woods’ last second shot beat the buzzer to top Fordham University at Rose Hill Gym on Feb. 24. With the victory, they ended the regular season with a record of 15-13.

The exciting win boosted the Hawks to the number six seed in the upcoming Atlantic 10 tournament, beating a Fordham team that finished 21-9 and in the top three of the A-10. The Hawks had lost their last four games at Rose Hill Gym before the weekend.

Following a Fordham basket that knotted the score at 50 with 22 seconds left, head coach Cindy Griffin called a timeout.

“We had a play we knew we were going to run,” Griffin said. “We wanted to get Chelsea Woods in the post. I knew even if she missed we would have a chance at a rebound and a putback, but we’re confident in Chelsea and she came through for us.”

St. Joe’s led throughout the game, with a six point lead at the half that dwindled in the waning minutes. Fordham tied the game at 43 with six minutes left and the lead continued to exchange hands.

With .8 seconds on the game clock, Woods’s shot deflected off the backboard and fell through the net. A Fordham timeout immediately followed, setting up one final desperation shot. The play was solidly defended by St. Joe’s as a Fordham shot in the corner made as time expired was tipped by junior Sarah Veilleux and fell harmlessly to the floor.

Since  Fordham playing on their senior day and a bye in the A-10 tournament at stake, the Hawks seemed to be facing a tall task. However, both Griffin and graduate student forward Amanda Fioravanti pointed to the game plan as a point of stability that kept them focused.

“We just wanted to stick to the game plan,” Fioravanti said. “We hadn’t played well recently against Fordham and we wanted to end the regular season strongly. We put together a great team win.”

With the A-10 tournament looming, an emotional game like this one could help build momentum entering the most important part of the season.

“We played some really good teams at the back end of our schedule and I think that really helps prepare us for the tournament,” Griffin said.

After squaring off with Virginia Commonwealth University at home on Feb. 27,  the team will be playing the rest of their games away from home. This bodes well for the Hawks, who are 6-2 in conference road games.

“Coach Griffin always says defense and rebounding travel,” Fioravanti said about the keys to their success outside of Hagan Arena this year.

Griffin concurred, emphasizing the same facets of the game as keys going into the tournament.

“We’ll focus on defense and rebounding going into the tournament like we have throughout the regular season,” Griffin said. “Of course a lot of it is taking and making easy shots, but defense will ultimately help us win games, especially in the A-10 tournament.”

The team has been through what Griffin described as “ups and downs” with a streak of five wins, immediately followed by seven losses. However, players say that their seniority and experience will help them and are invaluable to a team during this time of year.

“We feel like we’ve completed the first two chapters of the season,” Fioravanti said. “We got through the preseason and out of conference games and then conference games. Now we’re ready for the final chapter.”

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