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St. Joe's used its eight three-pointers to thwart Penn's comeback hopes. As anticipated, the sharpshooting St. Joseph's women's basketball team continued its success from three-point range when it visited the Quakers at the Palestra on Saturday. The Hawks' long-range bombs made most of the difference in Saturday's 69-50 win over Penn. Threes certainly had an impact on the first half. Although the Hawks led 36-26 at the break, both teams were 9-of-19 from two-point range. St. Joe's hit one more free-throw and sank three more treys than the Quakers to account for the 10-point halftime lead. While the Hawks drained four more three-pointers than the Quakers, it was the timeliness -- and not the number -- of Hawks three-pointers that hurt the Quakers most. With eight minutes left in the first half, Penn trailed 22-20. Looking for its first lead of the game, Penn attempted a three-pointer. St. Joe's rebounded the miss and moved the ball down court, where guard Melissa Coursey drained one of her four treys and gave the Hawks a 25-20 edge -- a lead they would never relinquish. A senior, Coursey leads the Hawks with 25 three-pointers and a 43.9 percent three-point shooting percentage that far exceeds her 28.5 percent mark for field goals inside the arc. "We knew who their main three-point shooter was and we knew we had to get out and challenge her, especially on the left side," Penn coach Julie Soriero said. "I think we did a much better job in the second half defending her." The Quakers held Coursey to only one three-pointer in the second half. In addition to Coursey, junior guard Angela Zampella added three treys of her own. Like Coursey, Zampella is more accurate from downtown, hitting 11-of-29 treys (37.9 percent), compared to 34.8 percent on two-pointers. "Zampella is a good penetrator and Coursey is also very good off the dribble, so if you go out too hard on the shot, they can put it down and make something happen," Soriero said. St. Joe's was especially successful from outside when Penn switched from its man-to-man defense to a zone. "I think the zone opened things up for Mel [Coursey]," Hawks coach Stephanie Gaitley said. The Hawks' quick ball movement enabled Coursey to get the ball, which worked well with Penn in its zone. "They did a very nice job on our zone with an inside-outside attack," Soriero said. "When it comes in to [center Jana] Lichnerova at the high post -- and we pinch in to defend that -- then she made some good passes out to the perimeter to find open players." The excellent perimeter play by the Hawks did not go entirely unmatched, as Penn also had some three-point success. The Quakers hit four treys, including career-firsts by both Liz Alexander and Diana Caramanico. Both sophomores entered the game 0-for-2 on threes, having missed one last year and one earlier this season. Alexander's three tied the score at 10-10, while Caramanico's cut St. Joe's lead to 38-31 early in the second half. "Both of the three-point shots I've taken this year were off the block at the top of the key, which is my favorite place to shoot from," Caramanico said. Caramanico had scored 636 career points in 32 games for the Quakers before sinking her first three. "I need to stretch my game out a little more and that's one of the ways I'm looking to do it," Caramanico said. Excluding the surprising help from Caramanico and Alexander, the Quakers were only 2-of-8 on threes. With St. Joe's nailing 8-of-20 treys, it is clear the Hawks' downtown attack played a key role in their victory.

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