Warriors Coast Past Western Connecticut

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WILLIMANTIC, Conn. – In the final regular-season home game of her career, senior forward Kelsey Santagata (Stamford) came off the bench for ten points, a season-high 14 rebounds and six assists as the Eastern Connecticut State University women's basketball team moved into a two-way tie for second place in the Little East Conference with a 79-61 win over Western Connecticut State University Saturday afternoon at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium.

A winner of six of its last eight, Eastern (15-8, 10-4 LEC) shares second place with idle UMass Boston, with the Warriors holding the tie-breaker over last year's LEC tournament champion. Western (11-12, 5-9 LEC) has dropped 11 of its last 12 to Eastern, which closes out the regular season Wednesday at Castleton University and Feb. 16 at Keene State College.

The team's only senior, Santagata had six points and ten rebounds to help stake the Warriors to an 11-point, 38-27, halftime lead. The Colonials were 0-for-12 from three-point range in the first half and finished 5-of-23 from distance in the game and managed only 29.1 percent from the field  and 10-of-20 from the stripe in the game.

Junior forward Mya Villard (Cromwell), who had 34 points (13-of-16 from the floor) and 19 rebounds in Eastern's 99-70 win at Western Dec. 5, had 23 points (11-of-15 from the floor) and ten rebounds.

At right: Kelsey Santagata (Photo by Sara Pisanelli)

 Despite turning the ball over 25 times, Eastern eased to the win on the strength of 59.0 percent shooting from the floor and a 54-30 advantage on the boards.

Freshman forward Anna Barry (Andover) had 14 points and seven rebounds, hitting six of her nine field goals to improve her season mark to 58.9. Junior guard Julie Jordan (Sterling) was held scoreless from the floor but contributed seven assists and five rebounds.  

Junior guard Jessica Davis (Hamden) led Western with 15 points but was her team's only double-digit scorer.