‘Nova Narrowly Takes Down Drexel in 48-46 Win


Courtesy of @NovaWBB Instagram

The Wildcats advance to a 6-0 season as they look to conference play.

Colin Beazley

Villanova was victorious in the Wildcats’ final non-conference test, winning 48-46 over Drexel behind 13 points from Brianna Herlihy.

This was the first game back at Drexel for Villanova head coach Denise Dillon. Dillon was the head coach of the Dragons from 2003 to 2020 and is in her first season leading the Wildcats. The Dragons are now led by Amy Mallon, who had been Dillon’s associate head coach since 2007.

The scoring for the Wildcats came almost entirely from the trio of Herlihy, Maddy Siegrist, and Lior Garzon, who combined for 34 points in the contest.

Herlihy led the Wildcats in rebounds, with twelve for a double-double. Siegrist had nine for the Wildcats. Herlihy also added four assists.

Drexel was led by junior Keishana Washington, who had a game-high 16 points, including 12 in the second half. Senior Hannah Nihill added 13, playing all 40 minutes for the Dragons.

The Dragons started the game quickly with a 7-0 run. Garzon scored Villanova’s first points with a three-pointer, but Drexel answered with eight straight for an early twelve point lead. 

However, the Wildcats outscored Drexel 15-6 in the second quarter to enter the half tied at 21. Herlihy scored eleven of her thirteen points in the quarter to erase the deficit.

The third quarter brought the resurgence of Villanova’s key player, Siegrist. The two time reigning Big East Conference Player of the Week had been held scoreless in the first half by the Dragons, but she scored eight in the quarter to keep Villanova in it. 

Down four with three minutes remaining, Siegrist hit a three to pull the Wildcats within one, and senior guard Raven James added a triple of her own to give the Wildcats a 46-44 lead with ninety seconds to go. Drexel’s Kate Connolly made a layup to tie the game at 46, but a jumper from James with 26 seconds left proved to be the game winner. Numerous attempts on the final possession from the Dragons would not fall.

The win extends Villanova’s undefeated start to the season, as the Wildcats improve to 6-0. Their next test is the beginning of conference play, as they visit Providence on Wednesday, Dec. 16 but eyes will be on the following game, as powerhouse UConn visits Finneran Pavilion for the first time since their return to the Big East.