Seniors Prevail in Win over York; Saint-Aubin, Wenger Recognized before Start of Game
St. Mary's City, Md. - It was a fitting end to Senior Day as senior guard Stephanie Saint-Aubin (Bowie, Md./Elizabeth Seton) knocked down the game-winning lay-up with 15 seconds remaining in regulation, giving St. Mary's College of Maryland a hard-fought 61-59 win over York (Pa.) College in Capital Athletic Conference action Saturday afternoon.
Saint-Aubin connected with first-year guard Pui Sham (Springfield, Va./W. Springfield) for the eventual game-winner, forcing York to call a timeout with 13.6 seconds on the clock to design a potential game-tying play. On the ensuing play, sophomore guard Khadija Mitchell (Bel Air, Md./Mercy), who had knotted the game at 59-all just 40 seconds earlier, threw up an off-balance jumper as time expired and junior forward Jamie Roberts (Rockville, Md./Barrie) snared the defensive board.
With the win, the Seahawks (9-14, 8-7 CAC) not only swept the season series with York but clinched the fourth seed in the upcoming CAC tournament which begins next Tuesday, February 23 with first round action. St. Mary's will see the Spartans (11-14, 7-9 CAC) for a third time this season in the CAC First Round next week as YCP finished the regular-season fifth in the league standings.
Before the Seahawks focus on facing York in the playoffs, SMC will wrap up the regular season tomorrow evening at No. 23/25 University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Va. Tip-off is set for 5:00 pm.
Roberts recorded her first career double-double with 19 points and a career- and game-high 10 rebounds while first-year forward Taylor Petrisko (Pasadena, Md./Chesapeake) matched her season-highs of 12 points and nine boards and senior center Alex Wenger (Baltimore, Md./Perry Hall) added 10 points and eight caroms.
Neither team was extremely crisp in the execution of their plays in the first half, combining for 23 miscues, while both squads struggled to have their shots fall early on. St. Mary's and the Spartans, however, did fire in seven three-pointers. No one owned a lead greater than five points until the final 4:22 minutes as the Seahawks put together a 9-2 run to boast their biggest lead of eight points following a layup by Petrisko at 1:42. Mitchell cut the lead to 33-27 at halftime with her jumper at 00:05.
Four Spartans reached double figures with Mitchell leading the way with 18 points and six steals off the bench while junior forward Jaimie Sapp (Bluemont, Va./Loudoun Valley) contributed a dozen points and eight rebounds. Junior guard April Sparkman (Walkersville, Md./Walkersville) chipped in 11 points and eight boards while senior guard Jamie Polan (York, Pa./West York) had 10 points.
The second half saw York working itself back into the game with short runs here and there and shutting down the Seahawks' perimeter offense.