BUFFALO, NY - Senior guard Damika Martinez scored a game-high 32 points as the Iona College women's basketball team moved to 8-2 in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play with an 80-62 victory over Canisius Sunday afternoon at the Koessler Athletic Center.
Martinez connected on 12 of her 24 attempts from the field, including four from behind the arc. As a team, the Gaels knocked down 10 three-pointers. The nation's active scoring leader, Martinez moved into 99th all-time on the NCAA Division I scoring list with 2,343 points, and now sits 125 points shy of breaking the MAAC scoring record of 2,467 points.
Junior forward Joy Adams finished three assists shy of a triple-double with 16 points, 16 rebounds and seven assists. Adams went 7-for12 from the field, and filled out the stat sheet with three blocks and two steals.
Freshman guard Philecia Gilmore was inserted into the starting five for the first time in her career and responded with a career-high ten points and four assists.
All eight players in uniform scored for the Gaels as Iona dished out 22 assists on 31 field goals. The Maroon & Gold also finished with a +16 advantage on the glass, out-rebounding the Griffs 42-26.
The two teams struggled to find their offensive touch early, as a jumper by Kayla Hoohuli gave the home team an 8-7 lead with 14:18 remaining in the first half.
Gilmore quickly responded with her second three-pointer of the game, to give the Gaels an 8-7 lead, an advantage they would not relinquish.
From there, Iona went on a 14-4 run, taking its first double digit lead, 22-11, on a layup by Martinez with 8:32 left in the opening period.
Ahead 36-30, the Maroon & Gold ended the first half with an 8-2 surge, grabbing its biggest lead of the period, 44-32, on a Martinez three with five seconds remaining.
Martinez opened the second half with a jumper to give Iona a 14-point lead, before the Griffs answered with a 9-4 run, trimming the deficit back to nine, 50-41, with 17:22 on the clock.
The Gaels dashed any hopes of a comeback with a 13-3 run, as a layup by Adams gave the Maroon & Gold a 19 point advantage, 63-44, with 10:53 left.
A Martinez three with 8:17 remaining gave the Gaels their biggest lead of the game, 73-46. Over the final eight-plus minutes of the contest, the Griffs trimmed the deficit with a 16-7 charge.
Canisius was led by 15 points from Emily Weber and 12 points from Kayla Hoohuli. Iona is back in action Thursday evening, when it travels to Fairfield for a 7:00 pm tip.