West Long Branch, N.J. (NEWS10) — Fifth year forward Selena Philoxy posted career highs in both points (21) and rebounds (19) to help power Siena Women’s Basketball (10-18, 10-10) to a victory in its regular season finale Saturday afternoon. The Saints completed the season sweep over MAAC foe Monmouth (14-15, 9-11) with a 69-65 win at the OceanFirst Bank Center in West Long Branch, New Jersey to lock up its first bye in the postseason tournament in four years.
As a result of Saturday’s win, Siena clinched the No. 5 seed in the 2022 Hercules Tires MAAC Women’s Basketball Championship, set for March 8-12 in Atlantic City, NJ. The Saints will face No. 4 Niagara in the MAAC Quarterfinal round on Thursday, March 10 at 2:30 PM at Jim Whalen Boardwalk Hall, with a trip to the MAAC Semifinals for the first time since 2018 on the line.
Philoxy began her career afternoon by recording her sixth double-double of the season during the first half, with the Saints heading to the locker room up by three after Monmouth led by as many as eight – 25-17 – with 6:41 remaining in the first half. Siena then embarked on a 17-9 run during the third quarter, holding the Hawks without a field goal for the final 7:53 of the quarter.
Monmouth responded by netting five of the first seven points of the fourth quarter and slowly chipped away at what was a nine-point Siena lead by firing off four three-pointers in the final 2:24 of the game. The home team came as close as within two with nine seconds remaining, but the Saints closed out the game with a pair of free shots to secure their first sweep of their conference counterparts since the 2016-17 campaign.
Philoxy recorded her third 20-point effort of the season, while grabbing the second-most boards in a game by a MAAC player this season and tied for the most by a Saint since current Siena assistant coach Heather Stec dropped 23 rebounds against Saint Peter’s on January 21, 2007. The Queens, New York product was joined by classmate Rayshel Brown in recording a double-double, with the Queens, NY native going for her third of the season with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Sophomore Ahniysha Jackson nailed a pair of second-half three’s as part of a 12-point effort for her third game in double-figures in the last four tries.
Monmouth’s Stella Clark led the home team with 21 points on her senior day, while sophomore Kaci Donovan added 18 points and senior Jen Louro added nine boards. Siena controlled the boards with a 44-37 rebounding advantage while shooting 40 percent from the field and 42 percent from beyond-the-arc. The Saints went 18-26 from the free throw line for their second-most makes and most attempts of the season.
The Saints finished the 2021-22 regular season with a seven-win improvement from last season in both regular season and MAAC play. Siena will enter its 33rd MAAC tournament next week for its seventh postseason matchup with the Purple Eagles.