WALTHAM, Mass. – After topping the century mark in points and putting on a shooting exhibition in Saturday's 49-point win over Southern Connecticut State, the Bentley University women's basketball team will face the stingiest team in the Northeast-10 Tuesday afternoon, the University of New Haven.
Game time at Charger Gymnasium is set for 1 pm and can be seen on the NE10 Digital Network or online at NE10NOW.tv.
Bentley, ranked 19th in last week's D2SIDA media poll, will travel to the Nutmeg State with records of 12-3 overall, 7-0 NE10 and 10-1 since Thanksgiving. They'll be facing a New Haven team that is 11=3 overall, 5-2 in conference play and undefeated in seven home contests.
On Saturday, coach Barbara Stevens' team posted its highest scoring total since November 2017 while shooting a school-record 67 percent overall and even better from three, 15 of 22 (.682) with seven different players connecting from deep. Bentley was also impressive at the foul line, making 20 of 24 and finishing over .800 for the fifth consecutive game.
The Falcons, who lead the NE10 Northeast Division by two games, were also impressive at the defensive end, limiting the Owls to six points on 12 percent shooting in the second quarter and seven points on 11 percent in the final stanza.
Eight Falcons scored at least eight points, with graduate forward Megan Lewis (Sevenoaks, England) leading the way with 18, and Bentley established season-bests in assists (26) and rebound margin (+30, 50-20).
Senior center Monica Viapiano (Holden/Holy Name HS), number two in the NE10 in field goal percentage (.564), scored 40 points in 38 minutes during two games last week and is leading the team in scoring (14.5), rebounds (6.3) and blocks (13).
Sophomore guard Kari Brekke (Appleton, Wisc./Appleton North HS) is the other Bentley player with a double-figure average. She scores just under 12 a game, leads the Falcons in three-pointers with 27, and has 13 steals in the last six games.
Two other Falcons, Lewis and freshman guard Ella Thompson (Greenwood, Ind./Center Grove HS), are averaging in doubles in conference action. Lewis, against NE10 foes, has made 12 of 24 three-pointers and is producing 11.1 points and 7.4 rebounds a game. Thompson, the NE10 Rookie of the Week for the second time in three weeks, has NE10 averages of 10 points, 4.3 assists and 4.1 rebounds.
Bentley has averaged 78.2 points over the last six games, raising its season average to 69.7, fourth best in the conference.
New Haven, tied for second in the conference's Southwest Division, ended a two-game slide (losses to unbeaten Adelphi and regionally-ranked St. Thomas Aquinas) with a 75-49 win at St. Michael's Saturday. The Chargers held the Purple Knights to a .325 field goal percentage and five three-pointers in 24 attempts.
Coach Deborah Buff has four players who own double-figure scoring averages, including senior forward Micah Wormack. She had 24 points at St. Michael's and gives the Chargers 12.9 points, 6.9 rebounds and 1.6 blocks a game.
Freshman forward Aurora Deshaies is also having a strong season with a 12.4 scoring average, 6.5 rebounds a game and a conference-best .602 field goal percentage. Junior Brie Pergola is a force from outside, with a .460 accuracy mark from deep (23 of 50).
The all-time series has Bentley owning a 29-4 advantage, including 13 straight road wins. Last year's was a defensive battle with the Falcons prevailing 50-42. Three-pointers were the difference with Bentley knocking down ten and New Haven four.
Bentley will face another difficult road test on Saturday when it plays a 3:30 game at 12-4 Pace University.