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St. John’s Women’s Basketball Drops Regular-Season Finale at Marquette, 79-75

Kadaja Bailey in action for the St. John’s Women’s Basketball Team. Photo by Jenny Rohl/1495Sports

Kadaja Bailey became the 28th St. John’s women’s basketball player to reach 1,000 points for her career, but the Red Storm fell to Marquette, 79-75, at the Al McGuire Center on Sunday afternoon.

Leilani Correa and Bailey led the Red Storm (11-18, 7-12 BIG EAST) in scoring with 22 apiece. Correa went 7-for-16 from the floor and 5-of-8 from deep while shooting 75 percent from the line. Bailey shot 7-of-14 from the floor and was a perfect 8-for-8 from the charity stripe. Rayven Peeples was a point shy of a double-double, logging 11 rebounds and nine points.

The Johnnies began the game with back-to-back triples to lead, 6-2, in the first minute of play. After a pair of foul shots by Correa gave the Johnnies the 12-6 edge with 6:20 left in the quarter, the Golden Eagles (20-9, 13-7 BIG EAST) evened the contest with a 6-0 run. Peeples layup snapped the rally and Camree Clegg found Correa for a three to give the Red Storm a five-point advantage with 4:18 to play in the period. Leading 19-14 at the media timeout, the Johnnies went 3-of-4 from the foul line to tack on three points to hold the 22-18 advantage after the first quarter.

Danielle Cosgrove nailed her second three of the game to give St. Johns the 25-20 edge, but an 11-0 run by Marquette followed with a Lauren Van Kleunen bucket giving the Golden Eagles the 31-25 advantage with 5:40 on the clock in the second frame. Bailey snapped the rally with a basket of her own and Unique Drake added a pair on the following possession with St. John’s trailing, 33-29. However, back-to-back baskets by Marquette followed, and the Johnnies burned a timeout down 37-29 with 3:40 to play in the half.

Drake scored on the next two possessions following the break, but with the Golden Eagles sinking a pair, the deficit remained at eight with 2:11 to go. An Antwainette Walker free throw extended Marquette’s lead to nine, but St. John’s closed out the half on a 7-0 run with a Correa triple leaving the Red Storm behind, 42-40, at halftime.

Coming out of the locker room, the Red Storm scored the first three points of the period to reclaim the lead. The teams went back-and forth, and at the media timeout, St. John’s trailed 50-47 with 4:11 on the clock. It was a low-scoring affair for both sides in the third quarter with the Johnnies shooting 3-for-13 from the floor and the Golden Eagles sinking just five shots from the field. Bailey’s basket as time expired left the Red Storm behind 52-49 with just 10 minutes to play.

Marquette began the final frame with a 6-0 run, forcing St. John’s to use a timeout trailing, 58-49, with 7:46 remaining in the contest. Following the break, Bailey scored four-straight for the Johnnies, and a 3-pointer by Correa with 5:39 to play put the Red Storm behind by just three and forced the opposition to use a timeout. The teams continued to exchange baskets late into the final period, but a layup from Peeples and a jumper from Correa tied the game at 65 apiece with 2:55 remaining.

With 1:51 left in the game, Bailey tied the game at 69 all, however, six straight points from the field by the Eagles including a dagger from Van Kleunen with less than a minute to play forced St. John’s to use a timeout with 32 seconds to play down, 75-69. Correa added a couple 3-pointers following the break, but Marquette went 4-for-4 from the foul line late to seal the loss for the Johnnies.

Up next, St. John’s will travel to Uncasville, Conn., for the BIG EAST Women’s Basketball Tournament. The Johnnies will enter the tournament as the seven seed and will face the 10-seed at 1:30 p.m. on March 4 on the BIG EAST Digital Network.

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