The University of Richmond women's basketball team defeated St. Bonaventure on Tuesday 71-64 at the Robins Center.
The Spiders led by as many as 11 early in the second half before the Bonnies started to chip away at the lead. With 13:38 left in the game, the Richmond advantage had been cut to one, but the Spiders then went on a 7-0 run to restore its lead.
The Bonnies fought back once again and took a one-point lead after junior Andrea Doneth hit a three-point shot. But the lead was short-lived as Richmond regained it for good on the team's next possession.
Sophomore Brittani Shells drove for a lay-up to give the lead back to the Spiders. Shells ended her night with 26 points, five assists, four steals, and five rebounds.
"What Brittani brought was the ability to create," Richmond coach Michael Shafer said. "When you have a player that can do that, it puts pressure on the defense."
Richmond also got key contributions from junior Nikita Thomas, who scored nine points and grabbed nine rebounds, and junior Danielle Bell, who had 12 points.
The game featured two of the top teams in the Atlantic 10 conference. Heading into the game, Saint Bonaventure was tied for first, while Richmond was tied for third.
The win was a testament to the resiliency of the Spiders. In their last game at Saint Joseph's University on Saturday, the Hawks went on a 19-2 run to start the second half en route to a 70-42 blowout.
"[Winning tonight] shows a lot of maturity," Shafer said. "We were able to come back after an arguably disappointing game."
Richmond's defense played a huge role in the victory. The Spiders forced 18 Bonnies turnovers.
"Collectively we force a lot of turnovers," Shells said. "We help each other out on the defensive end."
Richmond also shut down senior Katelyn Murray, who came into the game as Saint Bonaventure's second leading scorer. Murray averaged 11.6 points per game before playing the Spiders.
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"It was huge [holding Murray scoreless]," Shafer said. "With her and Dana Mitchell inside and outside, it's hard to stop them. Had [Murray] been able to score the game would have turned out differently."
The Spiders improved to 15-4 and 3-1 in the A-10 while Saint Bonaventure fell to 13-5 and 2-1 in conference play.
The next game for the Spiders will be 12 p.m. Saturday, when the University of Massachusetts comes to the Robins Center.
Contact staff writer Andrew Prezioso at firstname.lastname@example.org
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