The St. John’s Women’s Basketball program will open the 2021-22 season on Wednesday evening, as it welcomes Fairleigh Dickinson to Carnesecca Arena for a 7 p.m. matchup.
Embarking on the 10th season of the Joe Tartamella era, the Red Storm squad will look to build on its recent success in season openers, as the Johnnies have come out victorious in their last five.
After anchoring the Red Storm’s offense last year with 17.6 points per game, Preseason All-BIG EAST selection Leilani Correa returns for her junior campaign. With 387 points through 22 games, Correa recorded the 11th-highest single-season scoring average in school history. Correa engraved her name in the St. John’s record book last year, cracking the 30-point plateau on five different occasions. She is the only player in program history to record 30 or more points a combined eight times in her young career, and the first player to do so since the realignment of the BIG EAST. Correa also set a program-record for consecutive 30-point performances on the season, notching three, including back-to-back 33-point showings against top-25 teams.
The Johnnies also return Long Beach, N.Y., native Kadaja Bailey for her senior season. The 6-foot guard has been a key component of the Red Storm’s success over her time donning red and white. Bailey is coming off a stellar 2020-21 season that saw her set career highs in nearly every statistical category. Bailey led the team in rebounding last season, pulling down nearly six boards per game. Bailey averaged 9.8 points per contest last season, reaching double figures on 10 different occasions.
The Johnnies add four new faces this season. In addition to rookies Katie Burton and Idan Shlush, St. John’s welcomes a pair of standout transfers in Danielle Patterson and Danielle Cosgrove. Patterson, a product of Brooklyn, and Cosgrove, a Holbrook, N.Y., native, bring a high level of experience to the Red Storm squad. Patterson, who was a highly touted recruit out of The Mary Louis Academy in 2017, spent the last two years at Indiana University. Cosgrove comes to the Red Storm squad following three seasons at Notre Dame.
Wednesday’s matchup between the Knights and Red Storm marks the eighth all-time meeting between the two programs with the Johnnies leading the series, 5-2. The Red Storm has come out on top in the team’s last four contests. Most recently, St. John’s defeated the Knights, 70-44, in the its 2020-21 season opener. In the two teams most recent contest, Correa poured in 16 points, while also pulling down five boards for the Johnnies.
FDU kicks off the 2021-22 season after being selected to finish fifth in the NEC Preseason Poll. The Knights return a veteran heavy squad this year, including three players who earned NEC honors a season ago. Madison Stanley, who led the conference in field goal percentage (47%) last year, earned a spot on the All-NEC First Team, while sophomores Devyn Scott and Chloe Wilson were both selected to the All-NEC Rookie Team. FDU finished fourth in the league a season ago, boasting a 16-8 overall record, including a 12-6 mark in conference action. Last year, FDU guarded the perimeter well, allowing its opponents to knock down just 29 percent from three-point range. On the offensive side, FDU ranked inside the top-three in the NEC in both scoring margin (+2.5) and field goal percentage (42.2%).
Following Wednesday’s matchup with FDU, St. John’s will travel to Stony Brook for a 2 p.m. meeting with the Seawolves on Sunday, Nov. 14.
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