Nov. 25, 2007
MIAMI, Fla. -
The Providence College women's basketball team outscored Illinois, 34-26, in the second half, but its nine-point halftime deficit proved to be too much to overcome. The Friars fell to the Fighting Illini, 60-59, in the championship game of the Florida International Thanksgiving Classic on November 25 in Miami, Fla. Providence had an opportunity to tie the game with two seconds left in regulation, but made just one of two free throw attempts. PC tipped back the rebound off the missed free throw and freshman Trinity Hull (Cranston, R.I.) put up a put up a last second jumper to win the game, but it bounced off the rim.
The Friars trailed by nine (34-25) as Jenna Smith poured in 16 first-half points for the Fighting Illini. Smith was perfect from the field and from the foul line in the opening 20 minutes, shooting 6-6 from the floor and 4-4 from the line. Sophomore Kendria Holmes (Charlotte, N.C.) led the Friars with eight points in the first half. Illinois shot 56.5-percent from the field in the first half (13-23), while Providence shot 38.7-percent (12-31).
The Illini were cold from the floor in the second half, as they connected on just 5-24 shots from the field (20.8-percent). Illinois managed to keep its head above water from the foul line, where it cashed in on 16-17 free throws. PC made 12-of-26 shots from the floor in the second half (46.2-percent) and were 6-7 from the free-throw line. PC's only miss in the second half from the charity stripe came in the waning seconds.
Illinois held a 32-31 edge on the boards in the game. The Illini also capitalized on the offensive glass, scoring 17 second-chance points off 10 offensive boards. Providence had just six second-chance points in the game.
Holmes led the Friars with 19 points, three assists and two steals. Sophomore Emily Cournoyer (North Attleboro, Mass.) chipped in 10 points. Holmes and Cournoyer were each named to the All-Tournament Team. Jenna Smith recorded a double-double for Illinois on 29 points and 10 rebounds.
The Friars will return to action on Wednesday, November 28 against Fordham University in Bronx, N.Y. Tip-off is slated for 7:00 p.m.