The St. Thomas Aquinas College women's basketball team rallied from a 17-point deficit but came up short in an 80-75 East Coast Conference setback at Roberts Wesleyan College. The Lady Spartans have dropped three straight and stand at 13-7 overall and 7-4 in conference play, with Roberts Wesleyan improving to 11-8, 5-4.
RWC scored the game's first seven points and opened their edge to 19-10 before STAC closed to within 19-15 on a Jenna Erickson three to end the first quarter. Adiya Henderson's free throws gave the Lady Spartans their first lead at 22-21 and the teams exchanged leads with a Henderson three-point play again giving the visitors a 29-28 edge with 4:45 left in the half.
Sara Nady scored five straight points as the Redhawks answered with a 12-0 burst, and Emly Miller's trey in the final seconds put the hosts in a 49-35 lead at the intermission. Brooke Fields hit a three just past the two minute mark of the third quarter, opening the game's largest margin at 54-37.
STAC began chipping away and a pair of Henderson lay-ups were part of a 9-2 run, closing to 57-46 midway through the third. Erickson scored seven straight Lady Spartan points, but a Covley three kept RWC in a 67-57 lead entering the final frame.
Another three from Nady reopened a seemingly safe lead at 75-59 with 7:53 left, but STAC was far from finished. That three pointer was to be the last field goal for Roberts Wesleyan, with Erickson and Julia Winnick each nailing threes to spur the comeback. Another Erickson trey and a Ruth Adams lay-up drew the Lady Spartans to 76-73 with 2:27 left. From that point, STAC missed a trio of three pointers that would have tied the game, and shot just 1-10 from the field in the waning minutes as the hosts held on with late free throws.
Erickson led all scorers with 27 points, with Henderson adding 12 and nine rebounds for STAC. Emily Miller paced five Redhawks in double-figures with 21 points, with Lucy Covley contributing 17.
The Lady Spartans look to get back on track with an ECC showdown at New York Institute of Technology on Saturday, January 28. They then hit the Aquinas Hall hardwood to host LIU Post on Wednesday, February 1, with tip set for 5:30 pm.