OLEAN --- The first round of the WNIT kicks off in about 45 minutes in the Reilly Center as St. Bonaventure hosts Robert Morris.
The Bonnies are 22-9 and have won five of their last six games while Robert Morris (23-8) have won 17 of its last 19 games.
The key to the game? Likely, whoever wants it more and is more interested in playing and winning. For the Bonnies, it's their second straight WNIT berth. Robert Morris, meanwhile, was upset in the Northeast Conference semifinals and has carried a bit of a chip after not earning an NCAA berth. But the Colonials could channel that into an aggressive energy, particularly in a zone defense which the Bonnies traditionally don't handle well.
Check back here for halftime and post game updates while constant updates will be available on Twitter at www.twitter.com/amymoritz.
First half: The Bonnies get huge offensive production from sophomore Jessica Jenkins, including three 3-pointers. Heck, even senior Tiara Johnson netted her first two 3-pointers of the entire season (she was 0-for-5 heading into the game) for the Bonnies. St. Bonaventure struggled a bit against the Robert Morris zone, but found its groove and buckled down on defense. A 12-3 run closed the half for Bona, which enjoys a 40-25 halftime lead.
Second half: Dana Mitchell is, well Dana Mitchell. Already with four assists, she found the seams in the defense, scored three straight buckets and gives Bona a 48-27 lead with 15:39 to play.
With 7:06 left, the Bonnies lead 70-38 thanks to 20-point performances from Jessica Jenkins and Mitchell. The duo has outscored Robert Morris, 47-37.
Dana Mitchell scored 27 points and now is five points away from 2,000 career points. She won't see action in the final 2:50 of this one, though, as the Bonnies lead, 74-45.
Final: Bona wins, 76-50, to advance to the second round of the WNIT. Mitchell finished with 27 points and Jenkins with 22 as Bona shot 54.5 percent for the game. They will play the winner of tonight's Duquesne-Northwestern game. Date, time and location to be announced.
--- Amy Moritz