New Rochelle, NY- Sophomores Lindsay Nickel (Los Altos, CA) and Sheila Dixon (Schenectady, NY) netted 20 points apiece during Brown's first game against host Iona at the Iona Thanksgiving Tournament, but it wasn't enough to overcome the Gaels falling 73-67 at the Hynes Center. Brown drops to 2-3 on the season, while Iona picked up its first win of the year to improve to 1-3.
The Bears came out hot and gained a 7-1 lead just three minutes into the game, and continued to build it up to a 13-6 advantage 10 minutes remaining in the half. However, the Gaels slowly crept back into the game as a three pointer by Iona's Anda Ivkovic at the 3:00 mark brought Iona within two. But a layup by freshman Carly Wellington (Lake Oswego, OR) and a three pointer by junior Aileen Daniels (Waldwick, NJ) pushed the Bears' lead back to seven, but Ivkovic nailed a jumper for her 12th point of the half to send Brown into halftime with a 28-23 lead.
The second half heated up as the teams combined for 89 second-half points and shot over 50 percent from the field in the final 20 minutes. Iona's Kristina Ford erased a five-point Brown lead in the first minute of play to tie the game 28-28 at the 19:23 mark, and Iona gained its first lead of the night after buckets by Ivkovic and Marissa Flagg. But Dixon and Nickel went to work scoring 16 and 12 points, respectively, in the second half to keep the Bears within striking distance. Dixon nailed a three to regain a two-point lead at 15:05, and Nickel followed with a free throw and junior Hannah Passafuime (Soquel, CA) netted two of her own to extend Brown's lead up to five, 39-34 with 13:00 remaining on the clock.
Passafuime converted two more free throws giving Bruno a seven-point advantage a minute later, but Tomica Bacic and Flagg answered with back-to-back buckets to cut Iona's deficit to three. Flagg put in two free throws at the 11:10 mark to come within one, but Dixon hit another trey to keep the Bears on top. Both teams battled back and forth as the score was tied three times and the lead changed hands five, but the Gaels sealed up the victory after the squad went on a 14-5 run to take a 12 points lead, 64-52 with just 3:34 left in the game.
A Dixon three pointer cut Brown's deficit to five with 27 seconds left in the game, but Iona edged Brown by six points to end the game, 73-67.
Dixon brought down nine rebounds, handed out three assist and had a steal and a block to go along with her career-high 20 points, while Nickel added three steals and three rebounds to go along with her 20 points. Passafuime had a solid game for the Bears as she netted 11 points, handed out five assists and pulled down five boards. The Bears shot 40 percent from the field for the game and knocked down 16 of 19 free throws.
Three Gaels scored in double-figures, as Ford and Ivkovic tallied 18 points apiece and Flagg netted 14 points.
The Bears will take on UMBC tomorrow at 1:00 p.m.