NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- The Iona College women’s basketball team cruised to a 73-46 win Thursday evening, taking down the Niagara Purple Eagles at the Hynes Athletics Center. Freshman Alexis Lewis scored 21 and pulled down 10 rebounds, finishing with her first career double-double. Senior Aaliyah Robinson scored 16 points, hitting four-of-seven from beyond the arc; she also dished out a season-high four assists.
Iona started the game out on fire, opening up a 21-1 lead in the first quarter. The Purple Eagles didn’t register a made field goal until 3:06 remained in the opening frame; they missed their first ten shots from the floor. Meanwhile, the Gaels shot 62.5% in the opening frame. Lewis got off to an incredibly hot start, scoring 10 first quarter points.
The Maroon & Gold attacked cooled off in the second quarter, but their defense continued to be too tough for the Purple Eagles. Despite missing their first five shots of the period, Iona took a 41-11 lead into the halftime locker room.
Tonight’s first half defense performance was the best thus far in Iona’s season; Niagara’s 11 points is the lowest any Gael opponent has scored over a 20 minute stretch thus far this season.
The Gaels led from wire-to-wire, with the margin getting as wide as 42 points. Iona shot 46% from the floor overall, and 41.7% from beyond the arc. Transition proofed fruitful as the Gaels poured in a season-high 28 points in transition; they also had 19 points off of 15 Niagara turnovers.
Junior Marina Lizarazu finished with four points, five rebounds and six assists. Senior Joy Adams grabbed 12 rebounds and scored eight in just 23 minutes of play. Freshman Iida Ahvenainen scored a career-high five points off the bench.
The leading scorer for the Purple Eagles was senior Taylor McKay with 14 points, and junior Tiffany Corselli chipped in 11.
With the win today, Iona improves to 11-9 overall, and 7-2 in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play. The Gaels will take to the court against Monmouth this upcoming weekend.