Leyden Wins 400th, Women’s Basketball Downs USJ, 57-45, in GNAC Opener

Leyden Wins 400th, Women’s Basketball Downs USJ, 57-45, in GNAC Opener

WEST HARTFORD, Conn. – Head coach Ed Leyden picked up his 400th career victory as Suffolk women's basketball put together a team effort Saturday afternoon to begin GNAC with a victory as the Rams defeated Saint Joseph (Conn.), 57-45, at the O'Connell Center.  

SCORE: Suffolk 57 | Saint Joseph (Conn.) 45
RECORDS: Suffolk (5-3, 1-0 GNAC) | Saint Joseph (Conn.) (2-6, 0-1 GNAC)  

Alexis Hackett kept Suffolk in the game early on as the junior accounted for the Rams first seven points that gave the visitors a 7-5 edge. Shannon Smith added a basket with under one-minute remaining to gain a four-point cushion, but the Blue Jays trimmed the margin back to two with a hoop with 11 seconds left in the quartet to make it a 9-7 Suffolk game after the first 10 minutes.   

Suffolk clung to the advantage, but not for long as USJ tied the conference clash at 14-all with 3:50 left on the clock in the first half. The lead exchanged five times and landed in the Blue Jays favor at the half, 22-21.  

Marissa Gudauskas jump started 10-0 Suffolk spurt that put the blue-and-gold in front 31-22. In addition to the Rams' offensive outburst, their defense kept the Blue Jays off the scoreboard until the 5:40 minute mark of the third quarter. The early run and late scoring from Mya Blazejowski kept Suffolk ahead 41-31 as the game transitioned in the fourth frame.  

Suffolk held onto a 13-point margin as Hackett connected on a freebie with less than five minutes left in regulation. The Blue Jay scattered five consecutive points over the next few minutes to pull withint eight, 50-42. 

Leyden called a timeout and the Rams were able to gain their composure, outscoring USJ 6-2 out of the break and down the stretch to take the 57-44 victory.  


  • Jenni-Rose DiCecco posted 16 points to lead a trio of Rams in double figures. The freshman floor general shot 6-for-13 from the field, while also providing six rebounds, six dimes and one steal. 
  • Gudauskas finished the afternoon with 10 points, all of which came int eh second half. 
  • Hackett had a double-double on the day with 11 rebounds and 10 points to go with four helpers, three takeaways and three blocks. 
  • Blazejowski provided a burst off the bench with a seven-point effort behind a 3-for-4 showing from the field, which include one trey. 
  • As a team Suffolk shot 37.5 percent (21-56) from the field, 33.3 percent (7-21) from downtown and just 47.1 percent (8-17) from the free throw line. 
  • The Blue Jays outrebounded the Rams, 39-38.  


  • Suffolk opened its 24th GNAC season. 
  • The Rams moved to 17-7 in the first conference game of the season. 
  • The blue-and-gold opened its conference calendar on the road for the 12th time in program history and fourth straight season. 
  • The Rams won their first league outing of the season since beginning the 2015-16 league campaign with a 65-52 triumph over Simmons Dec. 9, 2015. 
  • Leyden earned his 400th career victory, 389 of which have come on Suffolk's bench. 
  • Suffolk won its 14th straight game versus USJ to move to 21-2 all-time versus the Blue Jays. 
  • DiCecco keeps her double-digit streak intact, scoring double figures in her eighth straight game. 
  • Hackett had her third double-double of the season and 18th of her career.  


Suffolk steps out of conference play Thursday, Dec. 6 when it welcomes Fitchburg State to Regan Gymnasium for a 7 p.m. tip-off.