ALTOONA, Pa. – Penn State Altoona senior guard Finnley Christine (Tyrone, PA/Tyrone) set a personal milestone on Friday night, reaching the 1,000 point mark for her collegiate career as the Lady Lions basketball team fell 108-83 to Saint Vincent College in the Adler Auxiliary Gym.
Entering the game needing 18 points to reach 1,000, Christine scored a team-high 21 points to become the fourth player in Penn State Altoona women's basketball history to top 1,000 points in a career. Christine's career total of 1,003 points puts her in fourth place on the program's all-time scoring list.
"Let me start with how proud and happy I am for Finn on this amazing accomplishment," Penn State Altoona head coach Casey Wilt stated. "She started out slow, but turned it on after the half. To end with 21 points after only scoring five in the first half is impressive. How about the support of her teammates once she reached 1,000? I love the camaraderie."
Christine's 9-for-11 (81.8 percent) shooting performance from the floor is tied for the third-best field goal percentage by a Penn State Altoona women's basketball player in a single game in program history.
Alexis Cannistraci (Tyrone, PA/Tyrone) added 18 points and a team-high five rebounds for the Lady Lions (1-1), and Sarah Huston (Coatesville, PA/Coatesville) scored 15 points while dishing out a team-best four assists. Huston's 10-for-10 performance at the free throw line is tied for the best single game mark in team history.
Kaley Strittmatter (Williamsburg, PA/Penn Cambria) added nine points, and Sydney Snyder (New Enterprise, PA/Northern Bedford) scored seven. Paige Burk (Claysburg, PA/Claysburg-Kimmel) finished with a game-high three shot blocks, and Kassidy Sorichetti (Halifax, PA/Halifax) had a team-best three steals.
"I thought Kass had an excellent defensive game," said Wilt, "She brought us to life in a very ugly point of the game."
As a team, Penn State Altoona shot 10-for-21 (47.6 percent) from three-point range, tying for the ninth-best three-point percentage in a game in team history.
St. Vincent (2-0) got a game-high 26 points and seven assists from Jenna Lafko. Taylor Boring added 12 points, and Madison Kollar and Erin Giancola scored 10 points apiece.
"St. Vincent is a very nice team. They're skilled and discipline," said Wilt. "We struggled to defend the entire game, and they certainly shot the ball well. I'm thankful to play a program as strong as St. Vincent so that we are better prepared for the conference."
St. Vincent used a high-powered attack to jump out to an early lead, shooting 72.2 percent from the field in the first quarter. That was part of a 62.3 percent shooting performance for the game, including going 63.6 percent from three-point range.
Early three-pointers from Snyder and Christine put Penn State Altoona up 6-2, but Lafko's layup and foul shot at 6:08 helped St. Vincent get ahead 10-8. The Lady Bearcats never relinquished that lead, and the team went on to hold a 31-19 advantage at the end of the opening quarter following a pair of late baskets from Boring.
Three-pointers from Boring and Lafko helped the Lady Bearcats to a 38-21 lead by the 7:38 mark of the second quarter, and Boring connected from three-point range at 6:08 to increase her team's lead to 20, 43-23.
Strittmatter scored seven of her nine points during the remainder of the second quarter, but Penn State Altoona trailed 57-36 at the intermission.
In the third quarter, Paige Montrose's three-point play at 6:07 helped St. Vincent to a 32-point lead, 70-38. Baskets from Lafko and Kollar extended it to 78-43, and Bri Van Volkenburg's bucket with 1:12 left in the period upped the Lady Bearcats' lead to 41, 88-47.
Stephanie Vaughn's three-pointer at 9:25 of the fourth quarter gave St. Vincent its biggest lead of the evening, 91-48.
Penn State Altoona outscored St. Vincent 36-20 during the fourth quarter, when Christine scored 16 of her 21 points. But the late push was not enough, as the Lady Bearcats left with a 25-point victory.
"This wasn't our best game, but I'm thankful that we faced a strong team so that we're better prepared for the conference," said Wilt.
Next up, Penn State Altoona women's basketball will travel north to face Division II opponent Lock Haven University on Tuesday, November 19. Tipoff is set for 6:00 p.m.