WALTHAM, Mass. – Senior All-America forward Jen Gemma (Milton/Fontbonne Academy) scored 22 points, including 15 in the third quarter alone, and junior guard Lauren Green (Damascus, Md./Damascus HS) added 15, all in the first half, as Bentley University rolled to a 77-51 win over Pace University in Northeast-10 Conference women's basketball Wednesday night at the Dana Center.
Bentley, ranked 21st in this week's Women's Basketball Coaches Association Division II poll, improved to 14-4 overall and 10-1 in the NE10, maintaining a three-game lead in the Northeast Division.
Bentley, which witnessed Pace jump out to an 8-0 lead, countered with a 12-0 run of its own, grabbing a lead it never relinquished. Green and Gemma led that charge, each connecting from three-point land and sinking two free throws.
With the lead standing at three four minutes into the second period, Bentley opened the game up with a 12-1 run making it 33-19 with 3:15 left until the half. Just as she did during the first-quarter run, Green pitched in with five points.
The third period belonged to Gemma, who nearly single-handedly outscored the visiting Setters (9-10, 3-8 NE10). Junior guard Macchi Smith (Los Angeles, Calif./Windward School) launched an 18-11 run with a three-ball and the next 15 were all scored by Gemma as Bentley pushed the lead to 53-36. Gemma, in the third, was six for nine overall and three of four from the foul stripe.
Bentley finished the game with a 10-0 run over the final 3:50 with the final 26-point spread the biggest of the night. Included in the closing burst were three-pointers from sophomore guard Amy McConnell (South Windsor, Conn./South Windsor HS) and junior guard Trevena Bennett (Union, N.J./Gill St. Bernard School).
Gemma, the number two scorer in program history with 1,880 points, came within one rebound of a double-double and also had two assists, a steal and a block. Green knocked down three triples and also provided two steals, two assists and a block.
Smith flirted with a triple-double, finishing with nine points, nine rebounds, seven assists and three steals. Bentley also received eight points, on 4-of-6 shooting, off the bench from freshman forward Monica Viapiano (Holden/Holy Name HS).
Pace featured sophomore guard Alexandra Monteleone (Cold Spring, N.Y.), with 18 points and six rebounds.
Bentley shot 43 percent overall, made 8 of 25 from outside the arc and buried 11 of 13 from the charity stripe. Pace, on the other hand, was limited to 32 percent from the floor, 3 of 21 from downtown and 8 of 11 free throws.
The Falcons also had the advantage in rebounds (48-35), turnovers (only 8, with Pace losing it 13 times), points off turns (15-7) and bench scoring (24-7).
Bentley will wrap up a three-game homestand Saturday afternoon against Le Moyne College.