Fairfield University shot 52.1 percent from the floor, including 60.9 percent in the first half, to defeat the Canisius women's basketball team 67-56 in the Koessler Athletic Center on Sunday afternoon. With the loss, the Golden Griffins fall to 10-17 overall and 7-9 in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference.
Senior Ashley Durham led Canisius with 16 points and eight rebounds. Early in the second half, Durham became the 20th player in program history to score 1,000 career points. Sophomore Kayla Hoohuli had nine points while seniors Allison Braun and Ashley Wilkes each scored eight points. Sophomore Brooke Angelos posted five assists in her first start of the season.
"We didn't have any defensive intensity in the first half. You have to give credit to Fairfield for knocking down the shots but we let them do what they wanted to do," Canisius coach Terry Zeh said. "Our offense didn't have a lot of flow today either. We only had six turnovers, but our offense was too much one-on-one and some of those missed shots felt like turnovers."
Canisius held an early 9-8 lead, thanks to three jump shots from Wilkes. Later in the first half, back-to-back jumpers from Braun brought Canisius within one at 17-16 before the Stags took control. Fairfield held Canisius scoreless for more than six minutes, building a 30-16 lead with the 13-0 run. A layup from Angelos and jumper from Braun made the score 30-20 at the half.
Fairfield (17-10, 11-5 MAAC) broke the game back open with 3-pointers from Alexys Vazquez and Katelyn Linney early in the second half to go up 36-20. Canisius wasn't able to cut the deficit to single digits until late in the second half and was never able to seriously threaten. Fairfield made 13 free throws in the final four-plus minutes to put the game away.
Christelle Akon-Akech had 14 points in 20 minutes while Katie Cizynski recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. The Stags had 18 assists on 25 baskets, shooting 25-for-48 from the floor. The 52.1 field goal percentage was the highest by a Canisius opponent this season.
Canisius plays its final two games of the regular season away from the KAC The Griffs take on rival Niagara University in a Battle of the Bridge contest on Friday, with tipoff in the Gallagher Center set for 7 p.m.
Notes: Fairfield has won the last eight meetings between the teams in the series... Freshman Tiahana Mills did not dress for the Griffs with an ankle injury and is out indefinitely. Mills had started all previous 26 games this season... The six turnovers for the Griffs were a season-low and the fewest since they had six against Rider on Feb. 8, 2010. Those six turnovers match the lowest in a game under Zeh... Durham had eight rebounds for the third time in the last five games.