The Rutgers women’s basketball team continued its dominant start to the season with a blowout victory over Niagara (0-3) on Wednesday night by the score of 87-37. The Scarlet Knights improved to 3-0 on the season and have won the past two games by a combined 124 points after beating Coppin State last weekend by 74. A trio of juniors led the way for RU.
Guard Arella Guirantes led the way from the start, scoring 20 first half points and finishing with 24 on 9 of 16 shooting, including 4 of 6 from three-point range, as well as 7 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals. The reigning Big Ten Player of the Week is stating her case early on as one of the premier players in the conference.
Wing Tekia Mack scored 15 points on 6 of 11 shooting, as well as 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals. Forward Mael Gilles was just 3 of 12 from the floor, but had a double double with 10 points and a monster effort on the boards with 16 rebounds. She added 3 blocks and 2 assists.
Sophomore guard Zippy Broughton played the most minutes in a game this season after nursing a minor injury, scoring 7 points on 2 of 7 shooting, as well as 4 assists, 3 rebounds, 1 block and 1 steal in 17 minutes of action.
The freshmen duo of Maori Davenport and Joiya Maddox had solid production off the bench. Davenport had 6 points on 3 of 4 shooting, 4 rebounds and 2 blocked shots, while Maddox had 8 points behind 2 of 4 from three-point range, 3 boards, and 2 assists.
Rutgers shot 48.5% from the field on the night, which included making 11 of 25 attempts from three-point range (44%). RU shared the basketball well, assisting on 23 of 33 total field goals made in the game. They did struggle from the free throw line, making just 10 of 18 attempts (55.6%). Defensively, they held the Purple Eagles to just 20.3% shooting and forced 19 turnovers, 11 coming off of steals. That led to a 23-10 edge in points off of turnovers and a 27-6 advantage in fast break points. The Scarlet Knights dominated inside as well, grabbing 52 boards and holding a +16 rebounding margin, as well as a 42-14 edge with points in the paint.
Up next, Rutgers (3-0) will end a three game home stand with Harvard visiting the RAC on Sunday, Nov. 17 at 2 p.m. ET. The Crimson are 3-0 to start the season and own a high major win over California.