Women's Basketball Falls in ECAC Title Game

Montclair, NJ (3/9/08) – Senior forward Dora Enright (Longmont, CO/Longmont) posted a double-double with 17 points and 18 rebounds as third-seeded Stevens claimed its first ECAC Division III Metro Women’s Basketball Championship, topping No. 1 seed and defending champion Montclair State, 57-50 at Panzer Gymnasium on Sunday afternoon.

Junior guard Dani Dudek (Rockaway, NJ / Morris Hills) had 10 points as the Ducks completed their record-setting season at 24-6 while also avenging a 77-74 overtime loss to Montclair State at Panzer Gym back on February 15. The 24 wins by Stevens are a school record.

Sophomore guard Jackie Berry (Tuckerton, NJ / Pinelands Regional) had 14 points and seven rebounds for Montclair, which finished the year at 19-11. The Red Hawks, making their seventh championship game appearance, were seeking to become the first team to repeat since New York University in 2002-03.

The Ducks never trailed in the contest as they jumped out to a 4-0 lead and led 13-6 with 13:18 on a free throw by Dudek. Montclair State trimmed the lead to four three times, the last coming with 8:18 left on two foul shots by Cynthia Warrington (Villas, NJ / Lower Cape May Regional). But Jean Matusiak (Queens, NY / Christ the King) scored twice from the free-throw line and Sarah Gehring (Spokane, WA / Central Valley) and Enright each added buckets as the Ducks boosted their lead to 26-16 with 4:09 left. Stevens took the 10-point advantage (30-20) into the locker room.

In the second half, Paige Armstrong (Fair Haven, NJ / Rumson-Fair Haven) pushed the Ducks lead to 36-24 with 14:15 to go on a short jumper, but Montclair countered with an 18-6 run over the next nine minutes to tie the game at 42-42. Berry and Marianne McGovern (Fair Lawn, NJ / Paramus Catholic) scored five points apiece during the spurt and Jessica Garrabrant (Denville, NJ / Morris Knolls) connected twice from the free-throw line with 5:51 left to deadlock the score.

Dudek, the Empire 8 Conference Player of the Year, ended any hopes of a Montclair State comeback as she scored Stevens’ next six points as part of a 12-3 run as Stevens went back on top 57-45 with 59 seconds to play. Gehring drilled a key three-pointer in the run and Enright, named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player, capped it off with her final field goal.

Armstrong finished with 10 points and three rebounds while Gehring added seven and Matusiak six. The Ducks outrebounded Montclair State, 40-29 including 16 on the offensive glass.

McGovrn finished with 11 points for Montclair State, which got six points and nine rebounds from Garrabrant, who was playing in her final game for the Red Hawks. Garrabrant finished with 1,027 rebounds, fifth-highest total in school history. Catherine Cristino (Farmingdale, NJ / Colts Neck) collected eight points and three blocked shots.