The College of Staten Island women’s basketball team stormed through the opening gate and surged past Centenary University tonight, 76-51, as part of non-league play at the Reeves Center in Hackettstown, NJ.  The win improved the Dolphins to 3-1 overall, while the Cyclones fell to 1-4.

The Dolphins used an incredibly strong first half to seize momentum and never looked back, opening as much as a 33-point lead later in the contest before settling for the 25-point margin of victory.

CSI started with a 15-4 run to open the game, powered by a five point spurt from Angelique Price and then back-to-back-to-back three-point buckets, the first two by Christina Pasaturo and the last by Victoria Crea.  After CU cut the lead to six, 17-11, on a bucket by Julie Pankowski, CSI ripped off the final 11 points of the quarter in 4:07, to take a commanding 29-11 lead at the end of one quarter.  Pasaturo scored eight of CSI’s final 12 points in the frame.

Two consecutive baskets, both by Samantha Flecker, the second a three-pointer, gave CSI a 34-11 advantage and completed the 17-0 run by the visitors, giving CSI plenty of cushion throughout.  CSI led by as many as 24 on three-pointers by freshman Megan McEwan and another from Pasaturo, and took a 51-29 lead going into intermission, thanks to a 57% shooting from the field and a 17-6 edge in turnovers.

In the third quarter, CSI’s defense was at the forefront again, and the Dolphins used a 12-0 run over five minutes to put the game thoroughly away and assuming a 69-36 lead just seconds away from the fourth quarter.  The run included four-straight free-throws and another long range shot from Pasaturo, who would finish with a game-high 29 points in 34 minutes of action.

With many reserves in the game, CSI would not score a basket in the final four-plus minutes, as CU won the fourth quarter 12-7, enough to trim the CSI advantage to 76-51 by the final whistle.

After Pasaturo’s 29, Flecker poured in 14 points for the Dolphins and a team-best seven rebounds.  Nicole Cartaino finished with 14 points in the losing effort for the Cyclones while Rachel Edwards added eight points and seven rebounds.  

Centenary finished shooting 45.8% to CSI’s 44.4%, but the Dolphins forced 29 CU turnovers to their 13, and it led to 15 more shots taken by the Dolphins, arguably the difference.  

CSI will now get a brief rest before traveling to Manhattan to take on NYU on Wednesday evening at 7pm in a game that will be played at Hunter College.