Women fall to Roger Williams, 70-61

Emma Reavis '23 (Photo by Sportspix.com / Mike Tureski)
Emma Reavis '23 (Photo by Sportspix.com / Mike Tureski)

WALTHAM, Mass. – After three closely-contested periods, the visiting Roger William University women's basketball team went on a 12-2 run late in the game to escape with a 70-61 victory over host Brandeis tonight in Red Auerbach Arena. With the loss, the Judges fall to 4-3 on the season, while the Hawks improve to 4-0.

In a game that featured 10 ties and six lead changes, including three of each in the fourth quarter, it was the late run by the Hawks that made the difference. Roger Williams led by three points after one quarter (13-10) and by two at the half (28-26).

Brandeis was even closer after three periods, as RWU held a slim 44-43 lead entering the final 10 minutes. The Judges erased it quickly as senior Camila Casanueva (Santa Barbara, Calif./Dos Pueblos) hit a 3-pointer to open the fourth quarter to give Brandeis a 46-44 lead. Roger Williams's Katie Galligan answered with the next two buckets of the game, but Brandeis' Kerry Tanke (Manalapan, N.J./Manalapan) grabbed an offensive rebound and converted a traditional three-point play to put the Judges back on top, 49-48, with 8:06 remaining.

RWU scored the game's next four points, with a Galligan lay-up making it 52-49 with 6:06 on the clock. Brandeis scored its next two points from the line on two separate trips to close within 52-51, but the Judges would not get any closer despite getting two more defensive stops. The Hawks' Samantha Mancinelli took over from there. She hit her first two free throws of the quarter to give the visitors some breathing room, and after Brandeis junior Francesca Marchese (Staten Island, N.Y./Staten Island Academy) hit a lay-up, Mancinelli answered with a 3-pointer from the left wing to push RWU's lead to 57-53 with 3:31 remaining. Mancinelli and her teammates would hit 12 of their 14 free throws down the stretch to keep the Judges at bay, while holding Brandeis to just a pair of late Casanueva 3-pointers down the stretch.

Casanueva finished with 15 points, three assists and two steals to lead the Judges in scoring. Junior Emma Reavis (Miami, Okla./Deerfield Academy) finished with 14 points, 10 of which came in the third quarter. First-year Caitlin Gresko (Howell, N.J./Howell) added 13 points and five rebounds. Tanke led the Judges with a season-high 11 rebounds to go with seven points, three steals and two assists.

Roger Williams was paced by Mancinelli, who scored 15 of her game-high 18 points in the fourth quarter, when she went 12-for-12 from the line along with her 3-pointer. She had been 1-for-8 from the field in the first 30 minutes of the game. Forward Karli Opalka finished with a double-double of 16 points and a game-high 14 rebounds. Galligan finished with 12 points, nine in the second half. In addition to outscoring Brandeis, 17-12, from the line, RWU had a 17-10 advantage in points off turnovers.

Brandeis will return to action on Thursday at 6 p.m. when they take on Bridgewater State University. Roger Williams opens Commonwealth Coast Conference play on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. at Wentworth.