February 8, 2021 –
The Saint Louis Billikens came to Hawk Hill for a Sunday and Monday game against the Saint Joseph’s Hawks. The Billikens won both. The Sunday game was a three-point win. The Monday game their offense was in gear, and Saint Louis earns an 81 – 58 win.
The difference in the size of the win is the play of Billikens guard Ciaja Harbison who scored a career-high 30 points hitting 4 of 5 from beyond the arc to set a collegiate-best in that category. Harbison made 9 of 18 from the floor and from the charity stripe sank 8 of 9. She added 3 assists and 3 steals. The Hawks had no answer.
“You’re playing a team twice and you’re playing against one of the best players in the conference, if not the best player in the conference,” Saint Joseph’s Coach Cindy Griffin said. “She did an unbelievable job coming at us, making unbelievable shots. That took the wind out of our sails.”
Saint Louis started quickly taking a 22 – 13 lead after one quarter behind 4 of 6 three-point shooting. In the second quarter the Billikens got inside baskets converting 8 of 14 from inside the arc to take a 44 – 23 lead at intermission. The attack on offense by the Billikens kept the Hawks defense off balance. And it impacted the SJU offense.
“It was a struggle from the start,” Griffin said.
Saint Louis finished the game making 29 of 61 (47.5%) and 10 of 20 from deep (50%). Saint Joseph’s defense could not stop them and the 81 points allowed tied the most points given by by Saint Joe’s this season.
“They were balanced,” said Griffin. “They were opportunistic. It was their day.”
The Hawks mustered 37.7% shooting (23 of 61) and went 5 of 14 from three-point land.
Katie Jekot led Saint Joe’s with 17 points as she hit 3 from beyond the arc. Kaliah Henderson added 12 points while Katie Mayock contributed 10.
Rachel Kent scored in double-figures for the Billikens getting 16 points while Natalie McNeal added 13 points.
Saint Louis won all three games in Philadelphia, two on Hawk Hill and one at La Salle improving their record to 7 – 3, 5 – 3 in league play.
Saint Joseph’s evens their record at 5 – 5, but are 3 – 5 in the Atlantic 10. SJU takes to the road next weekend with games at Fordham and Davidson.
Written By: Glenn Papazian