Despite a hot start, the Canisius women’s basketball team (4-9, 0-4 MAAC) was unable to overcome a series of second-half runs from Iona (10-2, 3-0 MAAC) and fell to the Gaels 69-57.
The Griffs jumped out to a 13-point lead after 10 minutes of play, but Iona overtook control in the second half with the help of 13 Canisius turnovers.
“We didn’t take care of the ball in the second half,” said head coach Terry Zeh. “We started telegraphing passes and turning the ball over. There’s no reason for that. It’s us. We just weren’t focused enough with the basketball in the second half.”
Canisius led by nine at the final media timeout of the first half, with the help of nine first half points from sophomore Tiahana Mills on 3-of-4 from behind the arc. The Gaels went on an 8-2 run to cut the Griffs lead to two at the break.
Mills would tie sophomore Crystal Porter, who tallied eight points in the first half, for the team-high with 14 points. Porter also led the Griffs with seven rebounds. Senior Jamie Ruttle was the third Griff in double figures chipping in 10 points.
The Gaels seized the momentum early in the second half, as a jumper by Joy Adams gave Iona its first lead of the game at 35-33. Adams finished with 13 points and 16 rebounds.
The Griffs were able to trade baskets with Iona until the Gaels took the lead for good with 13:56 to go in the game at 43-42 on an Aleesha Powell three – she finished with 19 points.
Damika Martinez led all scorers with 27 points.
Canisius fell to 4-9 (0-4 MAAC) with the loss, while Iona improved to 10-2 and stayed unbeaten in conference play at 3-0.
Canisius will return to action on Sunday, Jan. 5 against Saint Peter’s, with tipoff scheduled for 2 p.m.
GAME NOTES: Canisius outrebounded Iona 37-28, marking the fourth-straight contest where the Griffs have either won or tied their opponent on the glass… The plus-nine rebounding margin is the Griffs largest this season.