By Howard Goldin
BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 15- Saturday was a day in which the Fordham Rams and the Richmond Spiders played twice. The women competed in an afternoon contest while the men played in the evening.
After losing their most recent game, 65-61, to Duquesne, for their first home loss of the season on January 8, the Fordham Rams (14-3, 3-1) responded with their 13th win in the last 14, a 70-59 victory over the Richmond Spiders (7-10, 1-3) on Saturday afternoon at the Rose Hill Gym.
The game was a see-saw battle during the first 10 minutes. The score was knotted twice and the lead changed hands four times during those early minutes. A basket from beyond the perimeter from Abigail Corning, Fordham’s newest 1,000 point career scorer, began a run of 14 unanswered points by the Rams, who took a 29-16 advantage at 7:11.
Fordham’s excellent shooting from the floor, 58.6 percent in the half, kept the lead at double figures as the half concluded with Fordham ahead by a score of 38-25. The #2 scorer in the Atlantic-10, Erin Rooney, paced the Rams with 11 points and 7 assists.
A seven-point run by the Spiders cut their deficit to single digits, 43-34, at 16:54 of the second half. The Rams followed with nine unanswered points to take the largest lead of the contest, 52-36, with 11:50 remaining in the game.
Fordham’s double digit lead remained in effect until 90 seconds were left on the clock as a basket by Genevieve Okoro cut the lead to eight, 65-57. The Rams netted five of the final seven points of the contest to ensure their victory, 70-59.
The home basket was very attractive to the Rams during the contest as they achieved a season-high shooting percentage of 61.2 percent (30 of 49). Their usual superior defense kept the Spiders to 38.7 percent (24 of 62). The Rams also moved the ball well as 24 of their 30 baskets followed assists.
Rooney led the scoring with 14. The total was below her usual 20+ because she concentrated on dishing the basketball, reaching 11 assists, for her sixth double-double of the season.
Three other Rams also reached double figures in scoring, Corning with 12, Samantha Clark with 11 and freshman Danielle Burns who achieved a season and career high of 11 points in only 19 minutes on the court.
The Rams now hit the road for two games before returning home to the Rose Hill Gym on the afternoon of Saturday, January 25 to host UMass.