BUENA VISTA, Va. - 36-combined points from Mina Romito and Nicole Tolman paced the Southern Virginia University women's basketball team to a convincing 56-42 win over the Apprentice Shipbuilders. Romito was the leading scorer for the games, as she hit on 8-of-13-shots for 22-points. The sophomore forward also proved a dangerous asset for the Knights from behind the 3-point arc, hitting on 4-of-7 bombs from behind the arc.
Tolman showcased another strong presence for the home crowd, as she posted a double-double with 14-points and 12-rebounds. The Knights were successful on both ends of the court, as the stifling SVU defense allowed the visitors to connect on only 24% of their shots. It got even worse for Apprentice, as SVU limited the Builders to only 5% shooting from beyond the 3-point arc.
Both teams were looking for wins in the early part of the new year, and Tolman got the Knights going with two free-throws in the beginning of the game. SVU would never trail from that point on. At different points in the first half Apprentice was able to tie the game, but every time the Knights found someone to push the lead back in favor of the hosts. Ajalynn Domingo gave the Knights the biggest lead of the half, at seven, when she hit a free-throw to get a 22-15 lead.
The visitors were able to make a small comeback, and closed out the half behind only five, at 25-20. Apprentice came the closest at any point in the second half, as they scored the first basket of the half to trail by only three. Romito hit a three pointer to start an 11-point run over a two minute stretch that gave the Knights breathing room. With five minutes left in the game, Jessica Anderson tossed in a two point shot that gave SVU a 16-point lead, followed by Tolman's free throws for an 18-point margin, before the Knights coasted home for the eventual 14-point lead.
SVU was strong from the field hitting on 39% of its shots, while knocking down 75% of its free-throws. The Knights won the rebound war, as they pulled down 36-boards to the Builders' 33. Both teams found struggles in ball-handling, as they combined for 46 turnovers (SVU 23, Apprentice 22).
The win pushes the Knights to 6-8 on the season. SVU gets back to the court Jan. 15, when the team travels to Grayson, KY for a matchup with annual rival Kentucky Christian. Tipoff is set for 12:00 pm.