The St. Thomas Aquinas College women's basketball team started the new year with a 65-55 victory at Daemen College in an East Coast Conference tilt. STAC now stands at 12-3 overall, ranked #6 in the East Region, and their 6-1 conference mark keeps them 1/2 game ahead of Queens College at the top of the standings. With the loss, Daemen drops to 5-9, 2-4.
Jenna Erickson led four Lady Spartans in double-figures with 19 points as her team led most of the way in a game that was still within reach until the final minutes. Kaitlyn McCue added 14, Adiyah Henderson had 11, and Sam Burden recorded 10 for the visitors, while Natalie Galus and Carina Pringle posted 13 each for the Wildcats.
An early 7-0 run gave the Lady Spartans an 11-4 advantage after an Erickson three pointer, but Natalie Galus buried three straight treys to bring the Wildcats to within 18-17 after one quarter. Chelsea Murphy hit from deep to spur an 8-2 STAC run starting the second and the Lady Spartans led by as many as 10 before settling for a 36-31 halftime edge.
Continuing the trend, STAC opened a 10 point margin in the third only to see Daemen draw to 54-47 with six minutes to play. That was as close as they were to come, as the Lady Spartans secured their fifth straight win.
McCue dominated the boards with a game high 13 and Kellyann Averill pulled down seven, as the Lady Spartans earned a 45-35 edge for the evening.
The Lady Spartans begin a string of four straight at home with a return to Aquinas Hall this Saturday, January 7, for an ECC first-place showdown against Queens College, with tip set for 1:00 pm. The game will be followed by the men's contest, starting at approximately 3:00.