Fighting back from a 16-point first half deficit to Auburn, the Saint Joseph's women's basketball team rallied to make it a one-point game in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately for the Hawks, they couldn't complete the comeback as the Tigers got key baskets on the offensive end and stops at the other to pull away for a 81-70 win on Thursday night at Hagan Arena.

Down by four entering the fourth quarter after trailing by double digits for much of the game, a fastbreak layup by senior Whisper Fisher brought SJU to within 61-59 with 8:35 to play.

The teams would trade baskets over the next two minutes, with the Hawks' Lula Roig making it a one-point game, 65-64, on her first career three-pointer at 6:24.

Following a defensive stop, Saint Joseph's had a chance to regain the lead for the first time since the opening minutes of the contest, but failed to convert, as Auburn's Janiah McKay scored at the opposite end to help spark a 9-0 run for her team.

Trailing 74-64, the Hawks weren't out of it as they got back-to-back three-pointers from Alyssa Monaghan and Kristalyn Baisden, then forced a turnover with :52 to go.

Saint Joseph's (3-6) would get no closer though as the Tigers scored the game's final seven points to preserve the win.

In the first half, Saint Joseph's opened the game with a pair of quick threes as Katie Jekot gave her team an early 6-4 edge.

Auburn (7-1) soon answered to take control of the period. Ahead 13-11, the Tigers put together a 17-3 over a five-minute span to make it 30-14 on a jumper by McKay.

The Hawks would outscore Auburn 39-39 over the next two quarters, leading to a frantic fourth quarter.

For the game, SJU shot 44.3 percent from the field (27-of-61) and 40.6 percent from behind the arc (13-of-32), but went just 3-of-6 from the foul line. Individually, Monaghan went 6-of-14 from the floor, all from three-point range, to finish with a team-best 18 points to go along with a game-high five assists. Fisher came off the bench to pour in a career-high 11 points and add five rebounds, while Baisden and Jekot each connected on three three-pointers to finish with a combined 18 points.

McKay led four Tigers in double figures for Auburn as she finished with 21 points, four assists and four rebounds. As a team, Auburn shot 53.7 percent from the floor (29-of-54), 47.1 percent from three-point range (5-of-12) and 78.3 percent from the foul line (18-of-23).

The Hawks are back in action on Monday as they host Towson at 7 p.m.

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