Saturday, January 9, 2010

Women's Showdown: Marist ... Who Else?

Stop me if you heard this before: The Marist women's basketball team won.

The supposed showdown between two of the conference's remaining three unbeaten teams entering play Friday turned into a showcase for the Red Foxes, who knocked off Fairfield, 70-63, before a crowd of 1,992 at the McCann Center in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Fairfield (now 2-1 in the MAAC and 8-6 overall) ran out to a 16-8 lead early, but after that it was all Marist.

The winners outscored the visitors 37-15 from the time Fairfield had that eight-point early lead until the 16:05 mark in the second half to take a 45-31 lead. Fairfield pulled to within six late, but couldn't get any closer.

The victory was the seventh straight for Marist (3-0 and 11-4), now the remaining unbeaten team in league play.

Marist has won the last six regular-season conference titles and its play thus far indicates that string will reach seven.

The game also featured the two top individual players in the MAAC thus far, at least statistically. And, Marist got the big edge in that match-up, too, with its 6-foot-0 forward Rachele Fitz scoring 26 points and getting eight rebounds. Fairfield's 6-2 Stephanie Geehan, the league's leading rebounder entering the game, finished with 7 points and 3 rebounds.

The Stags only used six players in the game, and continued to be without solid forward Tara Flaherty, who is recovering from an ankle injury.

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