Joe Burgarino Sports Information Graduate Assistant
MISENHEIMER, NC- Safia Sheikh came out firing for the Pfieiffer women's basketball team (2-6) connecting on 4-of-5 three pointers in the first quarter of play. The sophomore finished the contest with a game-high 21 points, grabbed four boards, and recorded three steals to lead the Falcons to a 68-54 win over Montreat on Thursday night.
Pfeiffer dominated the first period of play holding the Cavaliers to only five points in the entire frame jumping out to an early 22-5 lead. During that run Sheikh hit back-to-back threes on separate occasions while scoring 12 points for the quarter.
Midway through the third period Montreat went on a 7-0 run cutting the Falcon lead to 40-28. A Shannon Jackson layup with 29 seconds left cut the Falcon lead under 10 points for the first time since midway through the first quarter. However, Kayla Whitworth responded with a jumper with two seconds remaining putting Pfeiffer up 50-39.
With 5:37 left in the contest the Cavs cut the Falcon lead to six points 53-47 following a Niroshka Perez three pointer. Pfeiffer responded closing the contest on an 8-0 run en route to their second victory of the season.
The Falcons played excellent defensively all night holding Monreat to just 34% shooting from the floor and 21.1% from three points land. Pfeiffer's swarming defense forced two shot clock violations and caused 23 Caviler turnovers leading to 21 points.
Perez paced Montreat scoring 15 points on 4-for-8 shooting, grabbed three rebounds and forced two turnovers.
Shontai Totten and Brianna Jones each scored in double figures off the bench. Totten was 5-for-9 from the field and scored 12 points. While, Jones was 8-for-10 from the free throw line and scored 10 points on the evening for the Falcons. Ariana Tillman grabbed a team-high nine boards and scored six points.
The Falcons return to action after the New Year on Saturday, January 2 at North Carolina A&T. Tipoff is scheduled for 2:00 p.m.