Jacy Bradley’s career day helps Billikens blast Rhode Island, 67-48

KINGSTON, R.I. – Jacy Bradley scored a career-high 28 points, and Saint Louis tied a school defensive record in a 67-48 Atlantic 10 Conference victory over Rhode Island Sunday at the Ryan Center.

 The Billikens snapped a four-game losing streak and improved to 11-16 overall and 5-7 in the A-10. The 11 total wins and five conference victories surpass last year’s regular-season totals.

 In addition to scoring a season-high 67 points and posting its largest victory margin this year, Saint Louis tied the school season record for holding opponents to fewer than 50 points. Rhode Island is the 10th Billiken opponent overall and fifth A-10 foe to fall short of the 50-point mark this season.

 Bradley’s 9-of-18 shooting performance included three 3-pointers. She posted season highs in free throws made and attempted, going 7-of-8 from the stripe. It was the senior guard’s third output of more than 20 points this season.

 Courtney Webb scored 15 points, including a pair of treys that moved her into a tie for 10th on SLU’s career 3-pointers list (90). Webb also tallied season highs in free throws made and attempted with a 5-of-6 effort from the line.

 Mallory Eggert scored 12 points on 6-of-11 shooting and collected seven rebounds, including four on the offensive glass. Lorreal Jones’ team-high eight rebounds also included four offensive caroms, and Jenna Mueller equaled her season high with six rebounds. Desirae Ball picked up a game-high four assists.

 Samantha Tabakman led Rhode Island (6-21, 1-11 A-10) with 16 points. Brianna Thomas scored 14 points, and Kerry Wallack grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds.

 “I’m very proud of our team’s effort tonight,” head coach Lisa Stone said. “We played with a lot of energy, and our seniors took charge. Jacy, Courtney and Mallory played very well and led the way.”

 After Rhode Island jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead, Saint Louis scored on five straight possessions to take a 10-7 advantage. Jones sparked the run with an offensive rebound and layup, followed by two Webb free throws. Bradley’s pull-up jumper put the Bills on top to stay, 6-5.

 Webb sank two more free throws, and an offensive rebound and layup by Eggert put SLU in front 10-7.

 Thomas hit a jumper to cut the lead to one, but Saint Louis answered by scoring on seven consecutive possessions in a 14-2 flurry.

 Bradley nailed a jumper from the right elbow, and Ball registered a fast-break bucket. Eggert followed with a short bank shot, and two Bradley free throws made it 18-9 Billikens.

 Eggert added two layups, and Halee Castleman collected an offensive rebound and scored to expand the lead to 24-11.

 The Rams narrowed the gap to 10 points twice, but a Bradley 3-pointer and Webb’s baseline drive gave the Billikens a 31-16 cushion en route to a 32-20 halftime lead.

 In the second half, two early 3-pointers by Webb and another by Bradley helped SLU build a 43-29 advantage. A 7-0 run allowed Rhode Island to slice the lead to 43-36, and after the teams twice traded baskets, it was 47-40 Saint Louis.

 The Rams couldn’t take advantage of a Billiken turnover to draw closer, and SLU embarked on an 11-2 spurt to take a firm grip of the game. Jones began the run with a three-point play, and Bradley followed with a 10-foot jumper for a 52-40 lead.

 Rhode Island scored to make it a 10-point game, but the Bills drove home a dagger with a five-point possession. Eggert made a layup, was fouled and missed the free throw. SLU gathered the rebound, however, and Bradley’s triple from the right wing made it 57-42. Rhode Island drew no closer than 14 the rest of the way.

 Saint Louis hosts Dayton Thursday, Feb. 28, in the Billikens’ final home game of the season. Tip time at Chaifetz Arena is 7 p.m.

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