Salve Regina wins on road against Eastern Nazarene, 77-67

Kerri Beland (Photo by Rob McGuinness)
Kerri Beland (Photo by Rob McGuinness)

QUINCY, Mass.- The Eastern Nazarene College women's basketball team dropped a 77-67 decision to Salve Regina Saturday afternoon at the Lahue Physical Education Center.

The Lions dip to 14-7 on the year and 7-7 in the Commonwealth Coast Conference with the outcome. The Seahawks improve to 6-15 overall and 4-10 in league action with the win.

Prior to the start of the contest, the Eastern Nazarene College women's basketball program recognized its senior class: Jessica Franco (Phoenix, Ariz.) and BreAnna Fraser (Henderson, Nev.).

Jaysa Cooper (Frisco, Texas) paced the home team with 19 points and eight rebounds off the bench. Fraser finished with 15 points and six assists. Jacquelin Arretche (Los Banos, Calif.) chipped in with nine points and three assists off the bench while Ashley Rendon (La Puente, Calif.) added eight points.

Franco got Eastern Nazarene on the board with a layup in the opening seconds before exiting to a standing ovation.

Salve Regina utilized a 7-0 run to grab an 11-4 advantage with 6:08 left to play in the first quarter.

The Lions cut the deficit to 11-8 on a layup by Cooper with 4:43 remaining.

The hosts trailed by four at the conclusion of the first frame after Arretche splashed a trey late in the quarter.

The visitors stretched their lead to 33-20 with 2:53 left to play in the second on a free throw by Kerri Beland.

Eastern Nazarene outscored Salve Regina 9-5 in the final 2:44 to narrow the gap to 38-29 at halftime.

Eastern Nazarene posted a field-goal percentage of 52.0% in the first half while connecting on just 2-of-7 from beyond the arc. Salve Regina shot 53.8% from the floor in the opening two quarters while also draining 4-of-5 three-point attempts.

The Seahawks increased their advantage to 17 points in the third as Liv Pierce banked in a layup with 6:26 to go.

The Lions sliced the margin to 53-44 with 1:06 remaining in the third quarter as Cooper sank a free throw.

Eastern Nazarene trailed 55-46 heading into the fourth period.

The hosts pulled to within four with 6:57 left to play on a three-pointer by Kayla Torio (Manteca, Calif.), 59-55.

The visitors pushed their lead to eight with 2:11 to go before sealing the victory with eight makes from the charity stripe down the stretch.

The Lions shot 42.1% from the floor and 36.4% from long range on the day. The Seahawks finished with a field-goal percentage of 50.9% to go with 50.0% from 3-point distance.

Beland scored a game-high 25 points for Salve Regina while Ally Esielionis, Torie Scorpio, and Pierce all finished in double-digits.

Looking ahead, Eastern Nazarene welcomes Western New England February 8 for a crucial conference clash.