UNION, N.J. - Junior guard Jennifer Janiak (Chelmsford, Mass.) matched her career best with 22 points to lead the Simmons College women's basketball team in a 94-77 loss to Keystone College this afternoon at Harwood Arena in the Kean Classic in Union, N.J. The Sharks fall to 0-2 on the season, while the Giants improve to 1-1.
Keystone forced Simmons into making 34 turnovers and made the most of it by outscoring the Sharks, 42-9, in points off turnovers to make the difference in the game.
First year forward Presley Silva (Wilmington, Mass.) made a layup with 13:22 to go in the second half to tie the game at 54-54, but the Giants scored the next 16 points over three and a half minutes, fueled by seven points apiece from senior guards Jazmyn Robinson (Hyattsville, Md.) and Ashley Evans (Wooster, Ohio), to take a 70-54 advantage with 10:56 left in the game. Keystone later maintained a 71-55 cushion at the 9:40 mark, before the Sharks put together a 16-6 stretch, led by five points each from Silva and Janiak, who's three-pointer pulled Simmons to within 77-71 with 4:59 remaining in the half. It was as close as the Sharks would get as the Giants closed out the contest with a 17-6 run to secure the win.
Evans canned her fourth trey in a four-minute span to give Keystone a 14-7 lead at the 14:40 mark of the first half, but Simmons reeled off seven straight points, including four from junior forward Gracie Rolfe (Newton, Mass.), to knot the game at 14-14 with 11:06 showing in the first period. It was the first of five ties between the teams over the next four minutes, before the Giants went on a 12-2 burst, including eight unanswered points, to take a 34-24 margin with 3:43 to go in the opening half. Simmons countered with seven straight points, including five from Janiak, to close to within 34-31 with 1:41 left in the half. The margin remained at three as the teams went into the intermission with Keystone holding a 38-35 lead.
First year forward Cierra Hensley (Frederick, Md.) hit a jumper just six seconds into the second stanza to give the Giants a five-point lead, but the Sharks came back with a 10-4 run, led by six points from sophomore forward Liz Brasa (East Hartford, Conn.), to take their first lead, at 45-44, since the opening minutes of the game. Simmons later held onto a 48-47 edge with 15:33 showing in the second half, before Hensley converted a layup at 15:16 for Keystone. The Giants didn't trail the rest of the way.
Janiak was 7-12 from the field, including a pair of three-pointers for the Sharks and added two assists, while Silva netted 17 points in just her second collegiate outing to go with 10 rebounds for her first double-double. She also added three blocked shots and a steal. Sophomore forward Ashley McAdams (Freeport, N.Y.) posted her second career double-double with 14 points and 14 boards in addition to three assists and Rolfe finished with 10 points, seven rebounds, four assists, a steal and a block. Sophomore point guard Jamie Zoldy (Watertown, Conn.) dished out a game-high six assists, scored two points, grabbed three rebounds and blocked a shot.
Evans finished with a game-high 28 points to lead Keystone and added four rebounds, five steals and an assist. Hensley dropped in 18 points on 8-13 from the floor to go with nine boards, four steals and an assist, while junior guard Samantha Donahue (Taylor, Pa.) chipped in with 14 points, three rebounds, five assists, three steals and a block. Robinson ended the game with 13 points, a game-high six steals, four assists and a rebound.
Simmons returns to the court on Wednesday, November 19 when it hosts Wellesley College at 7:00 p.m. in Moore Gymnasium, while the Giants travel to Cazenovia, N.Y. on November 18 to take on Cazenovia College at 6:00 p.m.