With 10:21 remaining in the women’s basketball team’s 51-48 win over Rutgers, the Red Storm held a 10-point lead and seemed prime to cruise to another win.
The Scarlet Knights, however, had other ideas, going on an 11-1 run by the 7:44 mark that brought Rutgers all the way back. A few possessions later, Rutgers had tied the game.
Then the Scarlet Knights’ Erica Wheeler stepped to the free throw line.
After missing the first attempt, she made the second shot—but a lane violation on the play resulted in a turnover, rather than a one-point Rutgers lead.
“For us to get that call, I think that was big time, and we were deserving of it, and it was the correct call,” added Barnes Arico.
“No (I’ve never seen anything like that),” said head coach Kim Barnes Arico. “After being the underdog for so many years, you always feel like you’re on the short end of getting a call in a crucial minute. I just think that’s the nature of the game. The stronger team makes the big plays.”
The win improves St. John’s to 16-6 overall, and 5-4 in the Big East. Rutgers, they fell to 12-9 overall, and 5-3 in the Big East.
“It was a really exciting game obviously. We turned the ball over a little bit in the second half, but I was really proud of the way that we hung together, because we could have fallen apart once they took the lead,” said Barnes Arico. “We didn’t do that, and we made the play that we had to make at the end, and I think it’s a great win for our program, and hopefully it’s a great win to get us into the
St. John’s Sophomore Amanda Burakoski had a career-high 16 points, which led the team. Junior Da’Shena Stevens had eight points and six rebounds, and Shennika Smith had nine points and six rebounds.
“I knew I had to step it up today, and once I let that first shot go I felt like a lot of confidence was rushing through my body, I kind of felt it right away,”
“It’s always nice to have people confiding in me and for me to have the ball, but it’s also good for my team because it makes the defenders come up on me and gives open looks and easy baskets on the inside.”
Coach Barnes Arico was very pleased with Burakoski’s performance.
“It seems that every time she’s in the lineup, we’re always positive (scoring more points than giving up). The reason is, because she extends the defense. Even if she’s missing, they key on her which opens things up for our inside kids,” said Barnes Arico. “She’s been doing a real good job, we try to pump her up every day, she knocks down shots. I tell her to shoot the ball. I took her out one time because she didn’t shoot the ball. She’s playing with a lot of confidence, and she did a really great job scoring for