Virginia Beats St. Joe's, 48-42 in WNIT Opener; Hosts Miami in Second Round on Wednesday
March 18, 2006
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia notched its fourth consecutive home win on Saturday night as the Cavaliers beat St. Joseph’s, 48-42, in first round action of the Women’s National Invitation Tournament at University Hall.
The Cavaliers, who improved to 19-11 overall, will host ACC rival Miami in second round action on Wednesday, March 22 at 7 p.m. at University Hall. The Hurricanes defeated Florida International, 95-83 to advance.
To order WNIT tickets, contact the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office beginning Monday, March 20 at 9 a.m. via telephone at 1-800-542-UVA1 (542-8821) and 434-924-UVA1; in-person at the Athletics Ticket Office located in Bryant Hall at Scott Stadium; or online at www.virginiasports.com.
Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for youth (aged 18 and younger), students of participating institutions, and senior citizens. The Ticket Office at U-Hall will open at 6 p.m. on Wednesday.
Both teams started out sluggishly after a two-week break from action. UVa pulled ahead by eight twice and held a seven-point edge at halftime, 27-20.
“Sixteen days is way too long,” Virginia head coach Debbie Ryan said. “It’s a long, long time to wait to play.”
In the second half, the Cavaliers pushed their lead to double digits, 36-26 on a lay-up by sophomore Denesha Kenion (Oxon, Md.). The `Hoos led by as many as 12 points twice before closing with the six-point win.
“It was really the defense and the rebounding that made the difference,” Ryan said. “I’m really please. This team came in ready to play.”
Junior Siedah Williams (Cleveland, Ohio) paced UVa with 13 points and a team-high 10 rebounds for her third career double-double. Freshman Lyndra Littles (Washington, D.C.) came off the bench for 12 points and seven boards. Sophomore Sharneé Zoll (Marlboro, N.J.) added nine points.
Timisha Gomez led SJU with 11 points. Whitney Ffrench added 10 points. Hillary Klimowicz grabbed 10 defensive rebounds.
“We’re usually a lot smarter than we played tonight,” SJU head coach Cindy Griffin said. “We came into the game knowing we had to shoot the ball and rebound. We didn’t do either well.”
Overall, Virginia out-rebounded St. Joseph’s, 39-35. The Cavaliers, who didn’t make a trip to the free throw line in the first half, finished 7-for-18 from the line, while the Hawks went 16-for-21.
WNIT First Round
1 2 - FinalSt. Joseph's (20-11) 20 22 - 42Virginia (19-11) 27 21 - 48