COLCHESTER, Vt. - Junior Kelly Frappier's (Colchester, Conn./Bacon Academy) putback at the buzzer lifted the Saint Michael's College women's basketball team past No. 22 Stonehill College, 61-59, on Saturday during Northeast-10 Conference play in the Ross Sports Center. The Purple Knights snapped a four-game losing streak while improving to 3-8 overall and 2-5 in the league, while the Skyhawks, who were ranked in the most recent USA TODAY national poll, are 7-4 and 4-3. Stonehill had suffered two of its losses to top-four teams, and qualified for eight of the past 11 NCAA Tournaments.
Frappier was a perfect 6-of-6 while totaling a career-high 12 points in addition to five rebounds, two assists and two steals for the Purple Knights, who trailed by as many as 14 points in the second half, but shot 51.7 percent in that period while holding the Skyhawks to a 24.1-percent performance. Junior Maggie Sabine (Litchfield, Maine/Oak Hill/Central Maine CC) totaled 12 points and seven rebounds, senior Alexa Long (Waterford, Conn./Waterford) notched 10 points and eight rebounds - becoming the 20th Purple Knight with 500 career boards - and first-year Indira Evora (Somerville, Mass./Somerville) had nine points and season highs of 12 boards and five assists without committing a turnover. Senior Cara Deroy (Hamden, Conn./Hamden) totaled seven points and four helpers.
Junior Amy Pelletier (Beverly, Mass./Bishop Fenwick) led Stonehill with 16 points, including the game-tying three-pointer with 6.7 seconds left, and senior Mary Louise Dixon (Wellesley, Mass./Wellesley) totaled 14 points, six rebounds, five assists and four steals. Sophomore Paige Marshall (Braintree, Mass./Braintree) added 10 points.
When Marshall hit two free throws with 16:26 to go in the contest, the Skyhawks were staked to a 45-31 lead, but the Purple Knights yielded only 14 points from that point until the final buzzer. Frappier scored six points to key a 13-2 run, with sophomore Megan Gaudreau (Brooklyn, Conn./Pomfret School) burying a three-pointer to bring the hosts within 47-44 at 11:09. However, Pelletier hit a three and Dixon converted a three-point play, and Stonehill led 53-44.
From there, Saint Michael's completed the game on a 17-6 run, knotting the game at 56 on Frappier's lay-up with 2:49 remaining and taking the lead on a Deroy bucket 41 seconds later. Long hit a free throw with 16.2 seconds left to create a 59-56 margin, but Pelletier found space in the far corner to hit a tying three-pointer at 6.7 ticks. After calling a timeout and inbounding in front of their bench, the Purple Knights ran a play through Long, whose baseline jumper was long, but Frappier grabbed the rebound at the left side of the hoop and released a quick shot from under the basket as the horn sounded.
Sabine scored after 47 seconds to put the Purple Knights ahead in the early portion of the game before Stonehill countered with a 14-2 run, as Dixon provided five points as one of four Skyhawks to knock down a three-pointer in that stretch. The visitors still led by 10, at 16-6, before Saint Michael's put together a 10-2 run. Evora netted five points before Long put home the final three to bring the Purple and Gold within 18-16 with 10:06 to go in the half, and the hosts held Stonehill to just one basket during a 4:59 span. However, 10 straight points by the Skyhawks created a 28-16 margin by 6:07 en route to holding a 38-27 advantage at halftime.
Saint Michael's hosts Le Moyne College next Saturday at 1:30 p.m.