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Ashcraft's 19 point outburst leads Juniata women's hoops past Drew

(Posted February 14, 2009)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Senior forward Kelly Ashcraft (Bellefonte, Pa./State College Area) poured in 19 points to lead Juniata College to a 63-45 win over Drew University, in Landmark Conference women's basketball action on Saturday night in Huntingdon, Pa.

Ten different Juniata players scored in the victory, which improved the Eagles' record to 13-10 overall, 7-5 in the Landmark Conference, and on the verge of clinching a berth in the Landmark Conference Tournament in two weeks. With two games remaining on the conference schedule for every Landmark team, a Juniata win or a U.S. Merchant Marine Academy loss would guarantee the Eagles a semifinal slot.

That could happen as early as Sunday afternoon, when Juniata hosts Merchant Marine at 2:00 p.m. at the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center.

Ashcraft's 19-point outburst was her best single-game effort over the last 11 games, and included six points in Juniata's 18-2 run to open the game. She tallied 12 points in the first half alone, on 6-of-6 shooting from the field.

Juniata's lead 30 points, 58-28, with 8:51 remaining in the second half, after an 11-0 Eagle run that was capped by back-to-back layups by Ashcraft and a foul shot by Kelly Rotan (Atco, N.J./Hammonton).

Rotan tallied nine points and seven rebounds off the bench for Juniata, while rookie guard Ashton Bankos (York, Pa./York Catholic) had eight points with seven boards. Senior Claudia McDowell (Alexandria, Pa./Juniata Valley) and sophomore Jen Hnatuck (Mechanicsburg, Pa./Trinity) chipped in with six points each. Sophomore Erin McGinley (Ashland, Pa./Tri-Valley), seeing her first action in the last six games, turned in a very solid performance with five points and four rebounds in 12 minutes.

Ashley Logan paced Drew (10-12, 3-9 Landmark) offensively with 15 points. Jessica Del Vecchio, who entered the game as the Landmark's three-point shooting percentage leader, was 4-of-7 from beyond the arc against Juniata, and finished with 12 points.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.