HUNTINGDON, Pa.- The Juniata women's basketball team played stifling defense as they defeated Drew, 53-40, Saturday afternoon at Memorial Gymnasium.
Madison Colyer (Newville, Pa. / Big Spring) started things off for the Eagles by grabbing and offensive rebound and quickly laying it in off the glass to make it 2-0. After the teams traded a few fruitless possessions, Gracie Stauffer (Loysville, Pa. / West Perry) got the ball at the right elbow. She surveyed the floor before tossing it to Cassie Mock (Martinsburg, Pa. / Central Martinsburg) who swished the three to make it 5-0. A few minutes later, Stauffer found Kaeana Rebert (Hanover, Pa. / South Western) in the left corner for another three as the Eagles led, 8-1, with five minutes to go. Drew finally broke through the Eagle defense and scored a field goal 15 seconds later. Both teams scored once more from the field the rest of the way as Juniata led, 10-5 after one.
Drew pulled within two, 12-10, over the first four minutes of the second quarter as Rebert's layup was the only Eagle bucket. Grace Long (Harrisburg, Pa. / Central Dauphin) found Megan Haines (Bloomsburg, Pa. / Bloomsburg) in the corner for another JC triple to push the advantage back to five. Averie Hess (Jersey Shore, Pa. / Jersey Shore) and Larissa Leonard (Three Springs, Pa. / Southern Huntingdon) found Rebert for back to back jumpers to make it 19-10. Rebert returned the favor as she found Hess for a long ball from the right corner which capped the Eagle 11-0 run and forced a Ranger timeout. Drew went scoreless for nearly six minutes before a foul shot broke the cold spell. Another free throw with a little over minute left made it 23-12. On the ensuing Eagle possession, Colyer got the ball on the baseline before she bounced it to Taylor Vrabel (Chambersburg, Pa. / Chambersburg) who converted the short jumper which was the final bucket of the half.
Juniata led 25-12 heading into the locker room, with 12 points being the fewest points they had allowed all year. The Eagles held the Rangers to 13.0% shooting from the field in the first half.
The third quarter was more of the same as Juniata outscored Drew, 16-7 to lead 41-19 heading into the final period.
The Rangers found their grove too late as they went for 21 points in the fourth to close the game, but Juniata still won comfortably, 53-40.
Juniata held drew to 21.1% shooting from the field, 13.3% shooting from three and dominated the boards 52-35.
Juniata returns to action at Catholic, Wednesday at 7:00.