Women's Basketball Drops Road Contest At Iona

Women's Basketball Drops Road Contest At Iona

New Rochelle, N.Y. - Pacific women's basketball erased a 12-point first half deficit, but a cold shooting performance in the second half led to an 83-70 loss at Iona Friday at Hynes Athletic Center.

Kendall Kenyon led the Tigers with 24 points and 12 rebounds, while Marjorie Heard added nine points and nine rebounds.

Pacific falls to 2-1 on the year, while Iona improved to 2-2.

Down by 12 midway through the first half, the Tigers rallied back and closed the first-half with a 14-4 run to tie the game at 44-44 going into the break. Pacific also erased a seven-point deficit in the second half, but shot 20 percent in the final 20 minutes.

Iona came out with hot-shooting at the start, building a 27-13 as they hit 11 of the first 16 attempts from the field, led by Damika Martinez, who connected on six-of-six from the field.

But Pacific's defense clamped down, shutting out Martinez for the final 11:35 of the half. The Tigers chipped away at the lead, as Hailie Eackles drove to the hoop and scored on an and-one. After a jumper by Kristina Johnson, Moore found Kenyon with a pass from mid-court for a quick lay-up on back-to-back possessions.

Kenyon tallied from the inside and Heard knocked down a pair of free throws to bring the Tigers within six, 42-36, with 3:05 left in the half. Heard and Eackles posted jumpers and with seven seconds to go before halftime, Sam Pettinger hit a free throw to knot the game at 44-44.

Iona opened the second half with the first seven points. The Tigers, after shooting 47 percent in the first half, missed their first 13 shots of the second half.

But in that stretch, Iona only scored the seven points and after free throws by Madison Parrish, and a steal and lay-up from Kenyon, a three-pointer by Heard brought the Tigers within one, at 53-52.

Moore posted a steal and Parrish finished on a drive for Pacific's first lead. After an Iona basket and a pair of free throws, Shanice Butler scored on a putback, and Johnson's lay-up gave the Tigers a 57-56 lead with 11:17 to go.

But the Tigers missed their next five field goals, as Pacific's poor shooting in the half curtailed their ability to press and dictate tempo. Aleesha Powell and Martinez posted lay-ups as Iona rattled off eight straight points.

Erin Butler and Kenyon scored on lay-ups inside, but four-straight free throws enabled the Gaels to take a seven-point lead with six minutes to play.

Pettinger's floater cut the margin to five, 72-67, but Pacific would get no closer, as the Tigers couldn't convert on their next six possessions, failing to get to the free throw line or finish at the rim.

Iona converted 28-of-32 free throws to settle on the 13-point margin.

The Tigers are back in action on Sunday, at 11 a.m. PT at Fordham.