ORLANDO, FL - The Iona College women's basketball team picked up its sixth straight win and completed non-conference action with a 78-66 victory over Central Florida Saturday afternoon at CFE Arena. Iona was held to just 39.4% shooting from the field, but connected on a season high 13 three pointers and shot 86.7 (13-15) from the free throw line.
Sophomore forward Joy Adams picked up her seventh double-double of the season with 19 points and a season high 21 rebounds. The 21 rebounds matched a career high for Adams, who was playing in front of a home crowd in her native Orlando.
Junior guard Damika Martinez scored 28 points, knocking down six three pointers in the contest. She also contributed four assists and three steals in the win. Junior guard Aleesha Powell had 13 points, connecting on five of her six shot attempts, including all three from behind the arc. Powell also had six assists in the win.
Senior center Sabrina Jeridore had six points in the contest, and picked up two blocks, taking sole possession of first place all-time in the category with 187 career "swats."
Iona never trailed in the game, taking an early 12-4 lead on a three by sophomore forward Cassidee Ranger with 13:52 remaining the first half. The Knights would trim the lead to three, before an 8-1 run by the Gaels gave the squad their first double digit lead, 22-12, on a layup by Powell with 9:26 left.
UCF scored 10 of the next 12 points, and cut the Iona lead to two on a jumper by Briahanna Jackson with 3:52 left in the half. A free throw by UCF's Stephanie Taylor knotted the game at 30 with 1:45 remaining in the first, before the Gaels ended the period on a 6-2 run, grabbing a 36-32 halftime lead on a three pointer by Powell with 19 seconds remaining.
The Knights opened the second half on a 8-3 run, pulling within one, 40-39, with 16:09 left in the second half. Iona would only be able to get ahead by four over the next eight minutes before the Gaels went on a 14-8 run, grabbing a 65-57 lead on a three pointer by Martinez.
The Gaels would control the remainder of the contest, taking a double digit lead late on free throws in the final minutes. ICF was led by Taylor's 16 points, and Jackson who tallied 15 points.
The Maroon & Gold looks to continue their winning ways when it hosts Siena on Dec. 29 in the team's MAAC opener at the Hynes Center.