Immediate Release: December 7, 2004
Laws, who notched her ninth career double-double with game-highs of 21 points and 13 rebounds, was fouled attempting a layup as the horn sounded. A career 68% free throw shooter, made the first but her second attempt was too strong. It was Laws' spectacular play that kept St. John's on the ropes for much of the game. In a rare non-starting role, Laws hit 8-of-10 from the floor and added four steals in 41 minutes.
"I am very proud of the girls' effort tonight," head coach Rich Conover said. "I felt like the team really bonded together after a tough loss up in Syracuse and made a great commitment on the defensive end. Obviously, I am disappointed in the way it ended. We had a couple of chances, but we are a young team and we'll get better in those situations as the season progresses."
After a sluggish and sloppy first half, both teams raised the level of their play, with BU shooting 72% in the second half and the Red Storm hitting on 54%. St. John's, which trailed by as many as 12 points in the first half and was behind for most of the second half, had a chance to win the game in regulation. Down by one, junior guard Tara Walker was fouled and toed the line with three seconds left and BU ahead 57-56. She only made 1-of-2, however, and the teams returned for the first overtime. A pair of free throws from St. John's freshman guard Andrea Peterson with 21 seconds left in the first overtime tied it at 64-64, forcing the final five minute period. In the final session, sophomore guard Rebecka Lindgren (Oskarshamn, Sweden) sank two free throws to give the Bearcats their final lead, 71-70, with 39 seconds left. St. John's answered with a layup with 25 seconds left and then added a free throw with seven seconds remaining, setting the stage for Laws' final-second spotlight. There were five lead changes in the final five minutes.
Junior guard Jen Blues (Overland, Kan.) came off the bench to score 13 points on 5-for-10 shooting, and Lindgren added 11 points in 48 minutes of work. Blues nailed a big three-pointer with 13 seconds left in regulation, erasing a two-point St. John's lead and giving BU a 57-56 margin.
St. John's put five players in double figures, led by senior guard Greeba Barlow's 20 points. The Red Storm were playing without their leading scorer, sophomore guard Kia Wright (17.3 ppg.), who did not make the trip.
In a game where every entry and perimeter pass seemed to be in jeopardy, the teams combined for 52 turnovers, including 27 by the Bearcats. Binghamton committed 18 of those giveaways after halftime.
The Bearcats were quick out of the gate, scoring 16 of the game's first 20 points, including five each from Blues and junior forward Jen Haubrich (Bow, N.H.). Tenacious defensive pressure resulted in 13 Red Storm turnovers in the first 20 minutes. But St. John's stepped up its own defense, limiting BU to one field goal over the final 8:10 of the first half, and a 16-6 visitor's run closed the gap to 22-20 at intermission.
Binghamton plays the first of back-to-back road games Saturday, December 11 at Atlantic 10 member La Salle.
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