SAINT LEO, Fla. – Opening the game on a 13-2 run, the Saint Leo women's basketball team (6-0) defeated NAIA's Southeastern University (1-6), 54-40, Saturday afternoon from the Marion Bowman Activities Center.
The non-region victory saw the Lions extend their unbeaten streak to six games, tying the 2008-09 Lions for the most consecutive wins to start a season. Chelsea Williams led the way with a game-high 20 points and eight rebounds, while Christina Granville and Keishara Green controlled the boards with nine rebounds apiece.
It was a 13-2 run to start the game for the home standing Lions, as Granville tabulated four of the Lions opening 13 points. Minutes later, the Fire began to heat up as sharp perimeter shooting saw Southeastern cut the lead to four with seven minutes left. Saint Leo regained momentum towards the end of the half as the defense stepped-up to keep the Fire off the board over the remaining five minutes, closing the half up five, 18-13. The 13 points surrendered by the Lions in the opening stanza was a season-best for the defense.
In the second half, it was a quartet of sophomore scorers who stepped up as Williams, Green, Chelsea Connelly, and Elise Clyburn got the Lions' offense going. Clyburn's half-opening basket propelled the Lions to score 16 of the first 23 points of the stanza to give the Green and Gold a 34-20 lead with 11:11 remaining.
Later, the Lions extended the lead out further as Connelly and Clyburn connected on consecutive three-point baskets grabbing a game-high 22-point lead with 4:31 to play. Saint Leo took a running lead of 15 through the final buzzer as the Lions continued their unbeaten streak.
The Lions kept the clamps on defensively as they kept Southeastern to just 40 points. The group forced 18 turnovers and held the Fire to just 31 percent shooting (14-for-45).
Overall, the Lions held Southeastern to three bench points and zero second chance points. The Green and Gold also overmatched the Fire in the rebounding department, 47-24.
After a week layoff, the Lions will return to action on Tuesday, December 13, when they play host to Newberry College. Tip-off is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. from the Marion Bowman Activities Center. For the latest news, information, and updates on the women's basketball team, visit SaintLeoLions.com.