Women’s basketball tops Holy Cross

Michael Hewitt

Turnovers, second hand points, and an 18-point performance from Adily Martucci carried Quinnipiac women’s basketball to a 74-61 win over the winless Holy Cross Crusaders on Saturday afternoon at the TD Bank Sports Center in Hamden.

Saturday’s affair with Holy Cross brought forth another second half comeback from the visiting opponent. Quinnipiac saw a 14-point lead erased on Thursday against Hartford, but pulled it out by two in the overtime.

The same theme presented itself today.

Despite trailing for most of the first 20 minutes, Quinnipiac took its six-point lead at the half, and increased it to 10 points (39-29) early in the second half. Martucci carried the Bobcats offensively, leading the team in scoring with 18, shooting 50 percent (7-14) from the field.

Quinnipiac head coach Tricia Fabbri was impressed with Martucci’s play, particularly with captain Maria Napolitano sidelined with an undisclosed ankle injury.

“It’s a challenge playing without Maria,” Fabbri said. “We shouldered the burden and it’s nice to see Adily go from 15 minutes last year to now her stepping into the role of making the shot.”

Holy Cross’ Tricia Byrne who finished with 12 points started to chip away, giving teammate Raquel Scott a chance to make her presence known.

Although Scott was only held to seven points, she connected from beyond the arc to knot the game 52-52 with 9:08 to play.

Except, Quinnipiac did not think – here we go again, Adily Martucci communicated the message keeping calm and playing confident.

“I just try to keep a positive mind,” she said. “I know our younger teammates might get worried, so we have to relax and make sure they’re alright and not show fear.”

With the game squared, Carli Fabbri, who scored 8 points shooting 40 percent from the floor, sank a three-pointer from the corner, giving Quinnipiac a lead they’d never give back.

Holy Cross stayed within reach, but Quinnipiac prevented a heartbreaking loss, forcing 25 turnovers and outscoring Holy Cross 20-2 on second chance points.

“We continued to make positive steps,” Fabbri said. “This was our most complete game on most ends of the floor. We showed progress and played our most balanced game.”

It wasn’t perfect. The Bobcats managed to turn the ball over 20 times themselves, something Fabbri needs to see fixed.

“We had a lot of unity in turning the ball over,” Fabbri said. “It’s not what we want to be. It’s something that will be fixed in time. “We know we need to make the right pass at the right time.”

Quinnipiac shot 40 percent from the floor (24-60). Edel Thornton ended the game in double figures with 10 points and three other Bobcats all finished with 8 in the victory.

The Bobcats are back in action on Tuesday, as they play host to Temple University.

“We’re going to give them our best shot,” said Fabbri. “That’s why we put them on the schedule to play them and win. We know it’s a tall order, but we’re excited.”

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