Feb. 2, 2005
PITTSBURGH, Pa. - Head coach Harry Perretta became the 26th women's basketball coach to reach 500 career victories, and Villanova (12-7, 5-3 Big East) shot 57 percent from the field in a 70-49 victory over Pittsburgh (11-9, 3-6 BE) on Wednesday night at the Petersen Events Center.
Perretta's milestone victory came courtesy of the Wildcats' consistent shooting touch throughout the entire game. Villanova shot 56 percent in the first half and 58 percent in the second half, making 14 baskets in each period to match its season high of 28 field goals.
Despite that accuracy, the host Panthers trailed just 42-34 with 16:49 remaining. However, Villanova then surged forward on a 14-5 run in 6:25 to stretch the margin to 56-39 with 10:24 left. Junior forward Liad Suez (Even-Yehuda, Israel) drained two three-pointers and scored eight points during the run.
Suez led all scorers with 22 points, as she connected on 8-of-12 shots from the floor, including 4-of-5 three-pointers. Junior forward Kate Dessart Mager (Media, Pa.) had another strong shooting night and added 15 points on 6-of-8 shooting. Sophomore forward Jackie Adamshick (Allentown, Pa.) contributed seven points and a game-high eight rebounds, while junior guard Betsy McManus (Pearl River, N.Y.) dished out eight assists to go along with three points, three rebounds and a steal in 36 minutes.
In the first half, the Wildcats broke away from a 13-13 tie with back-to-back three-pointers from senior guard Jennifer Hilgenberg (Readington, N.J.) and McManus. Later, Villanova held the Pittsburgh scoreless for a seven-minute stretch and opened a 35-22 lead just before the break. A late three-pointer by the Panthers made the halftime score 35-25.
Marcedes Walker led Pittsburgh with 14 points, while Vika Sholokhova chipped in 11 points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals.
Villanova returns home on Saturday afternoon for a 2 p.m. matchup with Seton Hall.
NOTES: Perretta's career record stands at 500-276 in his 27th year of coaching ... Suez reached the 20-point plateau for the fifth time this season ... Dessart Mager leads the squad with a 61 percent (72-of-119) shooting touch this season ... Villanova also had 28 field goals in a 70-54 victory over La Salle on Dec. 8 ... The Wildcats had their second-best shooting night of the season ... The team shot 57.4 percent in a 72-57 victory over Fairfield on Nov. 23 ... Villanova has won the past six meetings against Pittsburgh and 11 of the last 12 since the beginning of the 1996-97 season ... The Wildcats lead the all-time series 34-13.