The College of Staten Island women’s basketball season has started with a pair of lopsided wins by the Dolphins, and this evening they will put their undefeated record on the line when they take on NCAA Division I rivals Wagner College at the Sports & Recreation Center at 7pm. The game has been tabbed the Battle of the Borough, and is the 2nd annual event that serves to support the 30,000 Degrees Initiative, a collaboration between CSI, Wagner College, and St, John’s University to increase the number of Staten Island residents with a bachelor’s degree of higher by 30,000 by the year 2025. Wagner took the meeting last year at the Spiro Center.
CSI vs WAGNER COLLEGE
Matchup: College of Staten Island (2-0) vs. Wagner College (0-4)
Where: The Tank – 2800 Victory Boulevard, Staten Island, NY
Ticket Info: $5 – General Admission / FREE – CSI Students, Faculty & Staff
All-Time Series: Wagner leads 1-0
Last Meeting: November 15, 2016 – Wagner won 62-60
Players to Watch (CSI): Seniors Christina Pasaturo and Samantha Flecker made history on Saturday, and both can logically be expected to lead the charge here again tonight. Pasaturo scored 26 points in 24 minutes against New Rochelle, breaking the school record with 1,616 points, formerly held by Hall of Famer Jacclyn Rock, set in 2005. Pasaturo is the reigning CUNYAC Player of the Year and scored 12 points in last year’s meeting, leading all scorers in rebounds with 11 as well. Flecker became the 19th CSI Dolphin in school history to score 1,000 points in a season, when she poured in 14 points on Saturday. She led the Dolphins last year with 18 points against Wagner, adding a team-high four steals. Fellow seniors Victoria Crea and Angelique Price should figure on more minutes tonight after playing abbreviated games on Saturday in CSI’s 42-point victory. Look for three-point sharpshooter Jacquelyn Cali to also figure into the mix. She has hit on 56% from three-point range this season.
Players to Watch (WAG): Sierra Clark is leading the way for Wagner so far with 13.3 points per game, as she is one of three Seahawks who has made every start this season for second-year Head Coach Heather Jacobs. Tanasia Russell has made one start, but is next in line with 6.8 points. Nakylia Carter has only taken eight shots this season in 103 minutes, but leads the team in assists (6) and steals (6), so look for her to be active in the backcourt. The Seahawks feature a total of eight new faces in 2017-18, led by Clark.
News & Notes: Despite their long histories playing side-by-side on the Island, this is only the second meeting between the two schools, with last year’s meeting serving as the one and only. Wagner took a big lead over the Dolphins, going up 36-22 at halftime, before a Dolphins comeback saw them take the lead in the second half. Ultimately, a couple of Tanasia Russell free-throws overturned a five-point CSI fourth quarter lead, and Wagner was able to hang on for a 62-60 win. After that win, however, Wagner hit the skids and dropped 14-straight games before stabilizing to a 4-24 overall record. The Dolphins would go on and win seven of their next eight games after the tough loss. CSI went 10-3 on their home floor last year and took their opener over New Rochelle on Saturday. the road has not been kind to Wagner, as they are 0-3 away from home so far and have dropped their last four dating back to last year. The Seahawks have been struggling offensively to start the season. They are averaging just 41.5 points per game, the lowest mark in NCAA Division I. The Seahawks will try to win with their defense, which ranks 98th in the country in blocked shots and 50th nationally in steals. So too do the Dolphins like to win games. They are a plus-16 in turnovers per game to open 2017-18 and are forcing an astronomical 30.5 turnovers per contest. CSI is also doing a healthy job on the boards, out-rebounding opponents, 111-82 through two games.