BROOKLYN, N.Y. — Senior Victoria Porcasi (Franklin Square, N.Y./H. Frank Carey) and sophomore Kelly O'Donnell (Brooklyn, N.Y./St. Edmund Prep) combined for 54 points as the St. Joseph's College (Brooklyn) women's basketball team (7-3) overcame an 18-point deficit on the road to defeat Brooklyn College (3-3), 81-79, on Tuesday evening.
Porcasi scored a career-high 33 points—22 coming in the second half and overtime—to help the Bears to their first win in the borough rivalry since 2008. O'Donnell would score 10 points in a fourth quarter that saw the Bears outscore the Bulldogs 30-19 to force overtime.
How It Happened
The Bulldogs would extend to a six-point lead with two minutes in the first but the Bears would close on a 7-0 run capped by a Porcasi three-point play with 8.6 seconds to put the Bears on top 17-16 at the first break.
A Briana Gomez (West Hempstead, N.Y./Kellenberg) three-pointer to open the second pushed the SJC lead to 20-16. However, Brooklyn College would storm back going on a 19-4 run that would finish the quarter. The Bears would go scoreless over the final 5:31 and found themselves down 37-26 headed into the lockers.
The navy and gray couldn't bring the deficit back to single digits in the third and a putback layup by Jasmine Hansgen in with just under three minutes to play in the period brought the biggest deficit of the game at 18 points, 53-35. But Porcasi would start to take over scoring seven straight points to bring the deficit back to its halftime margin of 11, 53-42.
The Bears cut their deficit momentarily to single digits on three occasions early in the fourth, but still saw themselves down 10, 63-53, with 6:18 remaining in regulation. An O'Donnell three-point play followed by a barrage of trifectas by Jamie Provino (Harrison, N.Y./Harrison), Samantha Wilber (Island Heights, N.J./Central Regional) and O'Donnell powered a 12-4 run over 1:30 to quickly pull the Bears within two, 67-65.
After a Bulldog basket, O'Donnell scored two more buckets to knot the game at 69-69 and later a Porcasi triple put the Bears on top, 72-71, with 1:25 to go. A frenzy of turnovers, jump balls, and fouls in the final 25 seconds of the game saw the Bulldogs tie the game with Hansgen splitting a pair from the free throw line with five ticks left to force overtime, 72-72.
In the extra session, the Bears managed just one field goal, but shot 7-of-9 from the stripe to lead for three minutes in the period. Porcasi was fouled on an attempt from behind the arc and sank all three free throws to give the Bears a four-point lead with two minutes left. With 13 seconds remaining, Porcasi went 1-of-2 from the line to put the Bears up two, 81-79, and a Bulldog three in the waning seconds wouldn't fall sealing the Bears comeback victory.
For the Bears
- Porcasi played all 45 minutes and finished with a career-high 33 points on 9-of-18 shooting and 13-of-17 from the free-throw line. The reigning Skyline Player of the Week also matched her career high of 11 rebounds for her sixth career double-double.
- O'Donnell scored 17 of her 21 points after halftime and pulled down 12 rebounds for a double-double effort, also dishing out five assists.
- Caitlyn Staab (Lynbrook, N.Y./Kellenberg Memorial) secured a career- and game-high 17 caroms while chipping in four points.
- Provino, Lauren Quesada (Westbury, N.Y./St. Francis Prep), and Wilber contributed six points each as seven different Bears scored a field goal in the victory.
- It was the last overtime victory for the Bears since defeating Old Westbury in a non-conference game on December 7, 2013.
- The Bears snapped a 10-game skid to their borough rivals, closing the gap in the all-time series to 11-16.
Next Up for the Bears
St. Joseph's heads into finals and holiday break on a three-game streak and winners of six of their last seven returning to the hardwood on Saturday, December 29 to face Neumann University in the first round of the Catholic University Tournament in Washington, D.C.