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#10 Daemen too much for Point Park women in season finale, 69-54

Feb. 19, 2011

Ashley Henderson had 18 points Saturday to give her 1,209 for her career.


WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. – Daemen College, the No. 10 team in NAIA Division II women’s basketball, was too much for Point Park University Saturday as the Wildcats came away with a 69-54 road victory in American Mideast Conference play at CCAC-South Gymnasium.

Daemen (23-6, 13-3 AMC) led by eight at halftime, 34-26, and used a key 10-0 run midway through the second half to take control, 56-44, with 7:07 remaining.

Point Park (14-13, 6-10 AMC) used a 6-0 spurt to cut the deficit to 46-44 with 9:46 to go, but Daemen’s decisive run came right after that. The Wildcats kept a near double-digit lead the rest of the way as Point Park got no closer than eight.

For the Pioneers, it will be the second year in a row that they finish the year at 14-13 overall. Point Park has now recorded consecutive winning seasons for the first time in 25 years. The last time that happened was 1985-86. Point Park’s winning record last year was the first such season for the program since 1993-94.

Ashley Henderson had a team-high 18 points in her final collegiate game for Point Park. The senior guard from Greensburg, Pa., and Greensburg Central Catholic High School finished her career with 1,209 points in three seasons at Point Park. That figure ranks eighth in school history. She is one of only four players in school history with at least 1,000 points, 400 rebounds and 200 assists.

Junior center Joncelyn Peterkin, from West Mifflin, Pa., totaled 15 points and nine rebounds for the Pioneers. The 6-2 center had four blocks to extend her school records to 129 career rejections and 77 swats this year. Peterkin, who has spent the last two seasons at Point Park since transferring from Carlow, took possession of both records Tuesday night.

Daemen’s inside tandem of Sarah Soroka, the NAIA DII scoring leader, and Bridgette Burke were too much for Point Park to handle. Soroka reached her scoring average with 24 points and 10 rebounds. Fellow senior forward Burke posted 18 points and 10 boards. Those two led the charge on the glass as Daemen led in rebounding, 54-33.

Guard Marybeth Nugent scored 14 points from the perimeter to give the Wildcats three players in double figures. Daemen shot 50 percent the first half, and despite 37-percent shooting after halftime, the Wildcats still ended up shooting a solid 43 percent for the night.

Point Park was held to 35 percent from the field, which included 2 of 14 from 3-point range. Point Park cut the deficit to 35-30 early in the second half but missed a few shots from in close that would’ve cut into the lead. Daemen was able to push the lead to 40-31, but Point Park responded with an 8-2 run to get within 42-39, with 11:50 left. Peterkin scored inside twice to lead that surge.

Point Park enjoyed a decent start as it led, 13-8, after four minutes. But Daemen scored the next 10 points, and Point Park never led again.

Saturday’s game was the last at Point Park for head coach Sam Kosanovich, who announced that he would step down at the end of the season a few weeks ago. Kosanovich. will take over his role as Point Park’s Student Center Director full time. Kosanovich had been serving a dual role along with his women’s basketball head-coaching duties the last five years. Kosanovich’s 54 wins are the second most in a five year span in school history.