Last-Second Shot Pushes Buffalo Past St. John's, 73-72

Dec. 21, 2017

 

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QUEENS, N.Y. - In front of a sold-out crowd of 5,602 fans, the St. John’s women’s basketball team fell to Buffalo, 73-72,  on Thursday afternoon in its annual field trip day game at Carnesecca Arena.

The loss was the second of the season in Queens for the Red Storm (7-4), with the two falters coming by a combined four points.

Maya Singleton scored 15 points to lead the Johnnies, who saw four players reach double figures for the ninth time in 11 games this season.

With the Bulls (9-2) trailing by two in the waning seconds of the game, Buffalo’s Stephanie Reid drove to the basket and converted a spinning layup before adding a free throw to give the Bulls a 73-72 lead with 5.2 seconds remaining.

The Johnnies had a look at a potential game-winner, but the try fell just short and clinched the win for Buffalo.

St. John’s appeared to have captured a comeback win following a wild sequence of events with under a minute to play. After an Autumn Jones 3-pointer to put the Bulls up by four, 70-66, with 44.6 seconds to play, Jones was whistled for a technical foul to provide the Johnnies with an opportunity to tie or take the lead.

The home side was able to do just that as Andrayah Adams sank the pair of technical free throws to bring the Red Storm within two, and followed it up by drilling a 3-pointer from the wing to give St. John’s a 71-70 lead with just 34.5 to play, and sent the raucous Carnesecca crowd into hysteria.  

On the next possession, St. John’s ramped up the defensive pressure by forcing an errant pass from Reid to give the ball back to the Johnnies. Up one with 24.3 seconds remaining, Adams was sent to the charity stripe and split the pair to give the Red Storm a 72-70 lead. Overall, Adams struck for six points in 20.3 seconds to pull the Johnnies ahead.

Reid’s heroics, however, halted the potential comeback win for St. John’s.

The opening quarter saw St. John’s erupt on the offensive side of the ball, scoring a season-high 24 points in the first stanza on 8-of-13 shooting en route to its largest lead of the game at 24-15.

 In the second period, Buffalo clawed back into the game by starting the quarter on a 9-2 run to pull within two, but the Red Storm responded by forcing four turnovers and hitting its next three shots over the next 2:46 to restore the six-point advantage. Buffalo ended the first half on a 7-0 run to end the opening 20 minutes down by just one at 34-33.

St. John’s shot 13-of-26 (50%) and held the Bulls to 15-of-37 (40.5%) in the first half.

The third quarter continued the back-and-forth affair, with both teams scoring the ball at an efficient rate, and ended with the game tied at 51.

 Tiana England provided the highlight of the third quarter when the redshirt freshman launched a full-court pass to a streaking Akina Wellere, who finished at the rim and earned a trip to the line for the effort.

 England’s pass led to one of nine assists on the game for the three-time reigning BIG EAST Freshman of the Week.  The Stamford, Conn., native has now recorded seven or more assists in a game five times this season.

Imani Littleton played one of her best games of the season, scoring five points and rejecting three shots. The senior also locked down Buffalo’s leading scorer, Cassie Oursler, by forcing her to foul out with eight minutes to play.

St. John’s returns to action with a pair of road tilts to open BIG EAST Conference play. The Johnnies will battle Marquette on Dec. 28 and DePaul on Dec. 30.


 

 

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