NEWPORT, R.I. - Junior guard Angelica Ariola (Prospect, Conn.) scored a game-high and season-high 24 points to lead visiting Roger Williams University women's basketball to a 76-67 victory over Salve Regina University in Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) action at the Rodgers Recreation Center.
The Hawks (4-5; 2-1 CCC) won for the fifth time in the last seven meetings of the series. Salve Regina (5-4; 2-1 CCC), which leads the all-time series 47-13, suffers its first conference defeat of 2014-15.
In a back-and-forth contest through the first 15 minutes, the game featured four lead changes and a tie. Ariola's 3-pointer at 4:53 gave Roger Williams a 20-18 advantage and the Hawks never relinquished the lead after that.
Salve Regina had its largest lead (three points) on four occasions, the last coming on a pair of Laura Anne Dinan (Monterey, Mass.) free throws at 7:29 (18-15). Ariola's free throws at 6:09 started a 10-0 run for the Hawks as they built their largest first-half lead, 25-18, with 3:12 remaining.
Meaghan Harden (Sandwich, Mass.) and Dinan both had seven points at the break to lead all players, but the Hawks had the five-point lead on the scoreboard, 31-26. Seven different Roger Williams players scored in the first half, led by six points apiece from sophomore Bridget Quilty (Duxbury, Mass.) and Lisa Lutz (Downers Grove, Ill.).
Roger Williams took control in the second half with an 11-2 run in the first three minutes. Ariola scored on a fast break layup and finished the run with a short jumper. Quilty and sophomore Katie Lowerre (Sharon, Mass.) also had layups during the run while sophomore Emma Klis (East Northport, N.Y.) sank a 3-pointer, her second of four in the game.
CCC Rookie of the Week Allyson Esielionis (Shirley, Mass.) had a jumper at the top of the key before Mariah Nicholas (Acushnet, Mass.) hit a layup to regain the 14-point advantage for Roger Williams, 44-30 at 15:38.
The Seahawks had an 18-9 advantage over the next eight minutes to close within five points on two occasions, lastly on an Esielionis layup with just over seven minutes left (53-48). Salve Regina head coach Cori Hughes called a timeout, but the Hawks designed a play for Ariola who swished her second of three 3-pointers.
Ariola's third trey at 5:09 pushed the lead back up to 13 points, 61-48, before a Meaghan Harden four-point play started a 19-12 run for the Seahawks. Freshman Mary Eden (So. Kingstown, R.I.) swished a deep trey with 38 seconds remaining (Hawks led 73-67), then stole the ball off Klis in front of the Seahawk bench, but Harden's attempt to make it a one-possession game fell short and Roger Williams made three free throws in the final minute for the final score.
Quilty posted her second double-double of the season (10 points and 10 rebounds) while Klis finished with 15 points for the visitors. Salve Regina had five different players in double-figure scoring, led by Dinan with 18 points. The senior point guard went a career-best 10-for-10 from the free-throw line.
Harden had 15 points and three steals while Eden posted a dozen points and four thefts. Esielionis and Jillian Woodward (Orono, Maine) both had 10 points. Woodward and Dinan led the Seahawks with seven rebounds apiece.
Both teams break for exams on their respective Rhode Island campuses. Roger Williams returns to action on Tuesday, December 30, when it hosts Wheaton at 6 p.m.; Salve Regina travels to UMass Boston on Saturday, January 3, for its next game with the Beacons (1 p.m.)