NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- The Iona College women’s basketball team dominated the first quarter, and then battled their way to a 64-50 win over the visiting Saint Peter’s Peacocks.
The Gaels ended the opening frame on an 18-0 run, taking a 20-6 into the second period; from there the Maroon & Gold would have to battle the rest of the way, trudging through the Peacock’s superior efforts in both shooting percentage and rebounding.
Saint Peter’s shot 45.7% from the floor, won the rebounding battled, 34 to a season-low 28 for Iona; it’s only the second time this season where the Maroon & Gold have won a game when being outmuscled on the boards.
The key to victory for Head Coach Billi Godsey and the Gaels was turnovers; constantly hounding the St. Peter’s ball-carriers led to a season-high 29 forced turnovers, which the Maroon & Gold were able to convert in 23 points. Senior Rebecca Sparks had nine turnovers on her lonesome handing the Peacocks point guard duties.
Freshman Alexis Lewis was a catalyst for Iona throughout the afternoon, scoring 19 points on eight-of-14 shooting, and gathering a game-high four steals. Fellow rookie Treyanna Clay tallied eight coming off the bench.
The leading scorer for Iona was senior Joy Adams; the MAAC Preseason Player of the Year scored over 20 points for the third time in her last four games, finishing with 21 on seven-for-15 shooting.
Junior Marina Lizarazu dished out a team-high six assists while committing just one turnover.
Senior Aaliyah Robinson was honored in a pregame ceremony for becoming the 25th player in Iona women’s basketball program history. She finished with game playing 15 minutes, scoring three points and pulling in one rebound.
Sophomore Sajana Bethea scored 13 points for Saint Peter’s in limited minutes. Senior Hala Mostafa supplied 13 of the bench. Sparks did dish out a game-high nine assists.
With the victory, Iona improves to 19-10 on the season, and 15-3 in conference. The Maroon & Gold will put their undefeated MAAC home record on the line against the Fairfield Stags this Wednesday, Feb. 24, at 4 PM.