San Antonio – Mallory Moeller came off the bench to score 16 points, leading five St. Mary’s University players scoring in double figures as the Rattlers tied the school record for consecutive wins with a 79-65 victory over the University of the Incarnate Word in women’s basketball action Saturday night at Bill Greehey Arena.
The win tied the six-year old record set by the 2001-02 team, the only other team in school history to win 19 straight games.
The Rattlers fell behind early 6-2, but rallied and took control of the game. St. Mary’s took the lead at 8-6 on a layup by Moeller (Fr., Seguin) and the teams battled back-and-forth until the 7:40 mark of the first half. With the score tied at 16, the Rattlers went on a 13-3 run to take a commanding 10-point lead 29-19 with 4:16 left in the half. A three-pointer by Chastity Noble (So., El Paso) increased the lead to 13 at 36-23 with 38 seconds left and the Rattlers took a 38-25 lead in the locker room at the break.
St. Mary’s quickly expanded its lead to 20 points at 49-29 on a free throw by Juanita Merchant (Sr., Angleton) with 15:07 left to play. Incarnate Word battled back and cut the Rattler advantage to 10 on five occasions and even made it a seven point game on a Ieasha Sledge three-point play with 8:39 left to play. But the Rattlers responded with a 10-0 run to increase their lead to 17 at 68-51 with 6:13 left to play and the Cardinals never threatened the Rattlers again.
Moeller led five Rattlers in double figures with 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the field. Natalie Gamez (Jr., San Antonio) scored 13 points, pulled down five rebounds and dished out four assists. Merchant had 11 points, while Noble and Ashton Benford (Jr., Waxahachie) each had 10 points. As a team the Rattlers made 54.0 percent (27-50) of their shots from the field, including 38.1 percent (8-21) from three-point range.
Kim Robinson scored a game-high 20 points, while Hayley Harvey added 16 points and Brittany Hardy scored 10 for the Cardinals. UIW hit on 40.4 percent (19-47) of their shots from the field in the game, but just 23.5 percent (4-of-17) from three-point range.
St. Mary’s is now 20-4 overall and 11-0 in Heartland Conference play and clinched the top seed in the upcoming Heartland Conference Tournament with the win. Incarnate Word is now 14-10, 8-3. The Rattlers will go for their 20th straight win on Monday when they host Texas A&M-International University at 5:30 p.m. in the first game of a women’s/men’s doubleheader at Bill Greehey Arena.