The Iona College women's basketball team shot an impressive 45% from the field and raced to a 68-54 victory over Canisius Sunday afternoon at the Koessler Athletic Center, moving to 2-0 in the early conference season.
Early in the contest, the two teams traded buckets, and leads, with the Golden Griffs taking a 9-6 lead with with 15:39 remaining on a layup by Jamie Ruttle.
Iona responded with a three pointer by guard Damika Martinez to tie the contest. On the next trip down the floor, a layup by guard Aleesha Powell gave Iona a two-point advantage, a lead the squad would hold for the remainder of the game.
With 5:41 remaining in the first, guard Aaliyah Robinson, making her second consecutive start, knocked down a jumper to push the Iona lead to double digits, 31-20, for the first time. Iona would take its largest lead of the half at 34-20 after two free throws by forward Joy Adams. Two more free throws, this time from guard Shonice Hawkins, closed out the half as Iona took a 36-24 lead into the locker room.
In the first half, Iona was able to connect on 41% of its shots, while Canisius was held to just 31% shooting in the first 20 minutes of play.
The Gaels stretched their lead to 15 early in the second half before a jumper by Canisius guard Tiahana Mills cut the Iona lead to eleven, 39-28, with 17:13 remaining.
From there, Iona went on an 10-1 run to take a 20 point lead, 49-29, on a three pointer by guard Haley D'Angelo with 12:19 left in the second. From there, the Golden Griffs would get only as close as 14 for the remainder of the contest as Iona opened conference play with two wins for the first time since the 2008-09 season.
Adams led the Gaels with 18 points on 8-for-12 shooting from the field, and grabbed six rebounds. Powell contributed 15 points along with four assists while Robinson had 11 points. Battling early foul trouble, Martinez scored just seven points but pulled down a game high 11 rebounds. Canisius was led by Ashley Durham, who scored 21 points for the Griffs.