Ariana Vanderhoop had 14 points and seven rebounds as the Hawks fell just short at Rutgers, 56-51
MONMOUTH FALLS JUST SHORT AT RUTGERS
Rutgers 56 (1-0)
Monmouth 51 (0-1)
PISCATAWAY, NJ – A big first quarter allowed Rutgers University to take the early advantage in the game and hold off the Monmouth University women's basketball team for a 56-51 win in the season opener for both squads.
Monmouth scored five of the first seven points in the contest for the early advantage. Rutgers closed the first stanza on a 14-3 run and took an 16-8 advantage after 10 minutes of action.
The Hawks opened the second period on a 9-3 run and cut the Rutgers advantage to two, 19-17 with 3:40 to go until the break. Rutgers scored the next six straight and pushed its lead back to eight, 25-17. A Divine Dibula lay-up and a free throw from Ariana Vanderhoopsent the Hawks into the break trailing by just five, 25-20.
The two teams went back-and-forth to start the third quarter as Vanderhoop's driving lay-up at 6:37 cut the Rutgers lead to four, 33-29. The Scarlet Knights connected on a bucket in the final minute and led 43-33 after three periods of play.
Rutgers hit the first basket of the fourth quarter and took its largest lead of the game, 45-33 with 8:53 to play. A Mercille basket at 7:14 to play made it a 46-39 game. The two teams continued to trade baskets down the stretch as a pair of free throws from Vanderhoop at 1:06 cut the Rutgers lead to 55-51. The Scarlet Knights hit a free throw in the final minute to close out the 56-51 win.
NOTES & QUOTES
"This was an incredible road test to start the season. I was super proud of our fight especially in the fourth quarter. The physicality and execution demanded will no doubt help us grow. With eight new players, I am looking forward to us all getting to better know one annother."
- Head coach Ginny Boggess
- Rutgers improved to 6-0 all-time against the Hawks. It was the closest match between the two schools that are separated by just 38 miles in the all-time series.
- Five Hawks made their debuts for Monmouth, that included transfers Sandrine Clesca, Taisha Exanor and Jaye Haynes along with freshmen Rosalie Mercille and Divine Dibula.
- The Hawks were opening the season on the road for the fifth straight season.
- Five of the 11 Hawks who appeared in the game scored at least two points.
- Monmouth shot 28.3% from the field while Rutgers posted a 30.6 field goal percentage for the game.
- The Hawks hit 17-of-21 chances from the foul line. That effort was led by Ariana Vanderhoop, who was 8-for-10 from the charity stripe.
- Rutgers won the rebounding battle 53-39.
- Ariana Vanderhoop led the Hawks with 14 points in the contest, the 30th game of her career in double figures.
- Vanderhoop was also the team's leading rebounder with seven.
- Rosalie Mercille joined Vanderhoop in double figures as she finished with 10 in her collegiate debut.
- Belle Kranbuhl led the Hawks' defensive efforts with four blocks in the game.
- The Hawks have now hit at least 10 free throws in a game in six straight contests dating back to the end of last season.
Monmouth is back in action for its home opener on Friday, Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. The Hawks will host St. John's that night and before the start of that game, the Hawks will unveil the banner to commemorate their 2023 CAA Championship. Fans are encouraged to be there by 6:45 for the ceremony.