LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Siena Women’s Basketball took the court not only in search of a much-needed win over a conference rival Thursday evening, but to promote a cause much larger than basketball. The Saints (15-9, 9-5) took a 75-65 victory over Manhattan (9-14, 6-8) while hosting its 22nd annual Pink Zone contest at the UHY Center.

The event raised money for The Donna Foundation and featured a special pregame ceremony where each member of the team walked out on the court while escorting a breast cancer survivor or thriver.

After Manhattan thrived in a 25-point victory over the Saints during the teams’ first meeting back on January 12, Siena kept it close to open the return contest, with the home team using first-quarter free throws to hold a three-point lead after ten minutes of play. Manhattan held an 18-11 advantage in the second period and ultimately went to the locker room with a four-point halftime lead.

Playing without leading scorer and rebounder Anajah Brown for the first time this season, the Green and Gold exploded in the third quarter to earn a double-digit lead, scoring 22 of 32 points during the quarter. After building as large as a 16-point lead with 7:24 remaining in the game, the Saints had to fend off a late Manhattan run that made things interesting within the final two minutes.

With Siena up 64-50 with 2:37 remaining, the Jaspers embarked on a swift 10-2 run to come within six, but Siena’s solid work at the charity stripe shut the door and gave the Saints their tenth win in the last 11 meetings at the UHY Center.

Despite Manhattan holding a higher shooting percentage, Siena shot a stellar 25-28 from the free throw line and grabbed 25 points off of 16 Jasper turnovers. The home team held a 37-31 advantage on the boards over the league’s top rebounding squad, and limited MAAC Preseason Player of the Year Dee Dee Davis – who went for a career-high 37 points during the first meeting – to only seven total points and 2-14 from the field.

Freshman Elisa Mevius led the charge in the second half with 22 of her career-high 24 points coming in the final 20 minutes of play. Sophomore Emina Selimovic built momentum with 13 of her 18 points in the first half of action, while freshmen Teresa Seppala and Angel Jones each chipped in ten points. Seppala added four steals, while her and sophomore Valencia Fontenelle-Posson led the way on the glass with eight rebounds.

Siena’s three-game homestand concludes on Saturday, February 11 at 6:30 PM when the Saints face off against conference rival Niagara for the first of two regular-season meetings. Attendees are encouraged to wear black as part of the team’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Game.