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Women's basketball comes back against Drexel

By Joe Pantorno, Sports Editor

 

Hofstra bounced back from its 18-point loss at Delaware on Sunday for a comeback 68-61 victory over Drexel to move back up to second place in the Colonial Athletic Association.

"I know as a team, we all got better as individuals and as a team after the Delaware game," head coach Krista Kilburn-Steveskey told WRHU Sports.

Led by sophomore Katelyn Loper's 21 points, Hofstra rallied from a eight point half-time deficit, unleashing a 23-8 run to start the second half, to overtake the Dragons and get its seventh conference win of the season.

"I was just trying to be smart," said Loper. "Being aggressive, I thought my shots weren't falling, I felt like I was rushing them so I was just trying to take it to the basket."

"The players make the coaches look better," said Kilburn-Steveskey. "We talked about what they needed to do offensively to make our offense work better."

Drexel managed to keep Hofstra's leading scorer, junior forward Shante Evans in check, holding her scoreless in the first half. Evans, who coming into the game averaged around 18 points per contest, finished the game with nine points and 12 rebounds.  She currently ranks 18th in the nation in rebounding, averaging 10.3 rebounds per game.

"I noticed when we didn't have Shante on the floor, the offense kind of gets stagnate for a little while," said Loper. "When she got into the game in the second half, she draws everybody in."

Trailing 37-29 to begin the second half, Hofstra tied the game at 41 and continued its run to take a seven-point lead, its largest of the game with nine and a half minutes left in the game.

"We know about adversity," said Kilburn Steveskey. "We are getting better after every game."

Drexel cut the lead to within one, but Hofstra would not relinquish the advantage on the way to its 15th win of the season. The Pride is 15-5 overall this season and 7-2 in the CAA.

Senior guard Candice Bellocchio had her second consecutive double-digit scoring day, recording 13 points and four assists. Bellocchio is ranked 12th in the nation in assists, averaging 6.2 per game.

"I think our guards made better decisions in the second half," said Kilburn-Steveskey. "She [Bellocchio] was attacking and that's the mentality that we have to have when we need to eat a little bit of clock up but still need to run our tempo.

The third of Hofstra's double digit scorers on the day, senior guard Nicole Capurso, recorded ten points on 4-9 shooting from the field, including a 45 percent outing from beyond the three-point line (2-5).

Junior forward Candace Bond (2) drives to the hoop. (Sean M. Gates/The Chronicle)

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