ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- Host Nazareth overcame a seven-point halftime disadvantage Tuesday to rally past Alfred in an Empire 8 Conference women's basketball game at the Kidera Gymnasium. The final score was 62-48.
Nazareth improved to 9-5 overall and 4-1 in the Empire 8 by beating the Saxons for the 15th straight time. Alfred dropped to 5-8 overall and 1-3 in conference games.
Trailing 21-14 at the break, Nazareth made 9-of-16 shots in the third quarter and 7-of-13 in the fourth and outscored the Saxons 48-27 to dominate the second half. The Golden Flyers led 39-32 heading into the fourth quarter as Rachel Benedict, who was held scoreless in the first half, scored 13 points, including three three-point baskets. She added five more points in the fourth quarter to finish with 18 for the game.
Freshman Jadyn Abrams led all scorers with 23 points with 15 coming in the second half. Junior Lizzie Straub added 12 points, including two three-pointers.
Nazareth struggled mightily in an ugly first half by making just 5 of 28 shots (17.9%) and scoring just 14 points. Benedict went 0-for-6 from the field (0-for-5 from three-point range). Abrams accounted for eight of their points.
Alfred shot slightly better in making 8-of-30 shots (26.7%) with four three-pointers. Jamie Wilcox scored 12 of the Saxons' 21 points.
In the third quarter, Benedict took over, hitting consecutive three-pointers as Nazareth secured the lead for good, 28-25, with 5:31 left in the period. Alfred closed to within 33-32 late in the period, but Abrams and Benedict each canned three-point shots to close out the quarter for the Golden Flyers.
Nazareth kept the pressure on in the fourth quarter by extending the lead into double digits. The Golden Flyers led by as many as 16 points, 57-41, following a basket by Abrams with 3:32 left.
The Golden Flyers are idle this weekend and return to action Tuesday at St. John Fisher at 5:30 p.m.