JERSEY CITY, NJ - The Iona College women's basketball team battled to a 65-61 victory over Saint Peter's Tuesday afternoon at the Yanitelli Center in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference action. The Gaels only connected on 32.1% of their shots and only hit three three pointers, but got 28 points from the free throw line.
Junior guard Damika Martinez led the Gaels with 24 points, connecting on seven field goals and a 9-for-10 effort on the free throw line. Sophomore Joy Adams had 18 points and 11 rebounds while senior center Sabrina Jeridore had eight blocks.
The Peacocks led for the majority of the first half, taking an early 8-3 lead on a layup by Antonia Smith. The Gaels responded with an 11-4 run, taking a 14-13 lead on a layup by Jeridore with 11:56 left in the period.
Saint Peter's would then counter with a 10-2 run of its own, taking a 23-16 lead on a layup by Neechelle Ingrm with 6:41 remaining in the frame. The Peacocks would keep the advantage for the remainder of the half, and pulled ahead 34-26 on a free throw by Bridget whitfield in the final minute of the first.
A Whitfield three pointer to open the second half gave Saint Peter's its first double digit lead of the game, 37-26. The Maroon & Gold would chip away at the home team's lead, going on an 11-2 run to cut the lead to two, 39-37, on a pair of Martinez free throws with 16:35 left in the contest.
Saint Peter's would keep the advantage, going ahead by as many as eight, 49-41, before the Gaels went on an 13-3 run, taking a 54-52 lead with seven minutes remaining on a layup by Adams. Iona would hold the lead for the duration of the game, pulling ahead by as many as eight on a jumper by Martinez with 2:32 remaining.
Saint Peter's would get within three in the final minutes, but a trio of free throws by Martinez in the final 30 seconds helped the Gaels clinch their eighth straight victory.
The Peacocks were led by Kaydine Bent's 24 points and 11 boards. Iona is back in action Friday, in its first contest of 2014, at Canisius. Tip is set for 7:00 pm.