Home Teams Hold Serve in Women's Basketball League Openers



Jan. 2, 2014

CENTER VALLEY, Pa. - Home is where the heart is. In the case of five Patriot League women's basketball teams on Thursday night, it's also where good starts began in League play.

Three-time defending champion Navy and Holy Cross, the team it has defeated each of the last two years to claim the crown, were winners on their own floors, as were American, Army and Lehigh.

The second set of games in women's basketball comes Sunday. A pair of games tip at 1 p.m. as Army visits Loyola Maryland and Boston University hosts Lehigh. The remaining three tilts are set for 2 p.m. with Holy Cross heading to American, Colgate home for Bucknell and Lafayette entertaining Navy. All five games will air live on Patriot League Network.

Brief recaps of Thursday's five games are below.

at Army 66, Lafayette 49

WEST POINT, N.Y. - Jen Hazlett scored a game-high 22 points and Kelsey Minato tallied 21 to pace Army to a 66-49 victory over Lafayette in the Patriot League opener on Thursday afternoon at Christl Arena.

Watch the Postgame Video from Army below

Both players did plenty of damage from the foul line, with Minato shooting 14-of-15 and Hazlett 8-of-9 from the charity stripe. Their efforts were part of an overall 32-of-36 showing (88.9 percent) for the Black Knights (9-3, 1-0 Patriot).

Emily Homan paced Lafayette (6-6, 0-1) with 13 points, while Linnel Macklin scored 11. Danielle Fiacco scored five points with six rebounds and five blocks. She remains in second place all-time in League rankings with 327 career rejections, 17 shy of tying the record.



Trailing 4-0 in the early moments, Army rattled off a 13-0 run to take a lead it would not relinquish. It led by as many as 12 in the first half before Maia Hood's trey and Kelly Loughney's jumper helped whittle Lafayette's deficit down to 33-27 at the break.

Brianna Johnson and Minato scored back-to-back 3s for Army to put it up 39-30 with less than three minutes gone in the second. The Leopards were within 41-33 with 16:29 remaining, but Army scored nine of the next 11 points, capped off by Stephanie Geyer's layup, to take a 50-35 advantage with 9:27 on the clock. The Black Knights never looked back, extending the lead to as many as 22 in the final two minutes.

Army finished the game with a 36-29 edge on the glass and outscored Lafayette 32-14 from the foul line. Both teams shot under 35 percent for the game.

at Holy Cross 69, Boston University 59

WORCESTER, Mass. - Raquel Scott's fifth double-double of the season propelled Holy Cross (9-3, 1-0) to a 69-59 victory over new League rival Boston University (5-9, 0-1) on Thursday afternoon at the Hart Center.

Scott totaled a career-high 24 points and 10 rebounds, while Brisje Malone added a season-best 19 points with five rebounds and five assists. Alex Smith dished six assists, and Emily Parker had 12 points and nine rebounds.

Rashidat Agboola shined for BU with 18 points on 6-of-13 from the field and 6-of-10 from the foul line with seven rebounds and three blocks. Clodagh Scannell chipped in 13 points and Meghan Green had 11, both off the bench.

Holy Cross used a 6-0 spurt to edge ahead 25-19 with 6:30 left in the first, and scored eight of the final 12 points of the frame to secure a 33-27 halftime lead.

The Crusaders took their first double-digit lead of the game at the 13:27 mark of the second at 45-34, and used a 10-3 run capped off by a Parker layup to make it a 56-40 game with 8:11 left.

The Terriers orchestrated a late 11-0 run to climb back within 61-58 with three minutes remaining. Scott replied with a bucket and the and-one conversion to regain control for the Crusaders, who hit 5-of-6 from the foul line down the stretch to seal the win.

The Crusaders dished 17 assists and shot 24-of-57 (42.1 percent), while BU ended the game at 38.3 percent (23-of-60). The Terriers were 6-of-21 from long range despite not hitting their first trey until the 12:01 mark of the second.

Holy Cross won despite shooting just 2-of-13 (15.4 percent) from the arc.

at Lehigh 76, Colgate 69

BETHLEHEM, Pa. - A decisive 17-0 second-half run gave Lehigh just enough of a cushion to hold off a late Colgate rally in a 76-69 victory for the Mountain Hawks on Thursday night at Stabler Arena.

Watch postgame video from Lehigh below

Kerry Kinek scored a game-high 19 points with seven rebounds to pace Lehigh (8-4, 1-0), while Kayla Burton added 15 points with five assists. Six other Lehigh players scored at least five points apiece.

Carole Harris netted a double-double of 15 points and 13 rebounds to lead Colgate (4-8, 0-1), which dropped its third straight. Mariah Jones had nine points, four rebounds and four assists for the Raiders, while Josie Stockill had eight points and Lauryn Kobiela seven.

Colgate used a 10-2 run in the second half to take a 42-41 lead on Missy Repoli's 3-point bomb with 12:18 to play. After the teams traded two-point buckets, the Mountain Hawks began their run. Katie O'Reilly and Burton sandwiched an Alexandra Yantzi layup with a pair of 3-pointers to send Lehigh on its way. Burton capped off the run with a second trey that gave Lehigh a 60-44 advantage with 6:26 left.

Colgate hung tough thanks to defensive pressure and clutch shooting late. Catherine Lewis hit back-to-back treys to cut Lehigh's lead to 70-60 with 1:44 left, but the Raiders couldn't get a defensive stop on the next possession as Amina Affini banked in a layup to give Lehigh a 12-point cushion.

Lehigh outrebounded Colgate 52-42 and won the battle for second chance points 16-9. The Raiders rebounded from a 2-of-14 showing from the arc in the first half to shoot 6-of-15 in the second to hang around.

at American 77, Bucknell 40

WASHINGTON - Lauren Crisler led three American players in double figures with 12 points in 18 minutes off the bench as the Eagles ran away from Bucknell 77-40 in the Patriot League opener at Bender Arena on Thursday night.

Watch postgame reaction from American below

Arron Zimmerman added 11 points and Shaquilla Curtis chipped in 10 for American (8-4, 1-0), which gave first-year head coach Megan Gebbia a victory in her first conference matchup. Alexis Dobbs added nine points, six rebounds and four assists, while Jen Dumiak had eight points and eight dishes.

Claire DeBoer had nine points and a game-high 14 rebounds to lead Bucknell (5-6, 0-1), which was playing for the first time since the win at Longwood on Dec. 21.

American took control right from the opening tip with the game's first six points. The Eagles used an 11-0 run later in the half to take a commanding 30-11 lead with 4:48 until the break before bringing a 35-19 advantage into halftime.

After scoring the first seven points of the second, the Eagles used a 10-2 spurt midway through the stanza to extend the lead to 55-27, and added 14 unanswered points over a 3:13 stretch to move in front 71-35 with 4:07 to play.

Bucknell struggled to a 12-of-59 showing (20.3 percent) from the field, including a 4-of-23 ledger (17.4 percent) from the 3-point line. American shot a blistering 17-of-26 (65.4 percent) in the second half to pull away.

Bucknell beat American 19-10 in offensive rebounds, but the Eagles had a 17-10 advantage in second chance points. American also outscored the Bison 12-0 on the fast break and dominated in the paint 42-12.

at Navy 67, Loyola Maryland 44

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Audrey Bauer scored 11 of Navy's points during its game-opening 16-0 run in Thursday night's 67-44 victory over Loyola Maryland at Alumni Hall. The win was Navy's fifth straight in League openers.

Bauer finished with a game- and career-high 23 points on 9-of-11 from the floor and 5-of-6 from 3. Kara Pollinger added 15 points, all from the arc, while Alix Membreno had eight points, eight assists and five rebounds, and Sandita Condie chipped in eight points and four dishes off the bench.

Nai Brown led the Greyhounds (3-9, 0-1) with 12 points on 6-of-13 shooting from the field, while Nicole Krusen and Lisa Mirarchi both added eight points apiece. Loyola was playing without leading scorer Kara Marshall, who is averaging 13.5 points and 2.2 assists per outing.

Navy (9-3, 1-0) scored its 16 unanswered points over the game's first seven minutes and never looked back. The Mids used another 14-0 run later in the first to build a 37-10 lead with 3:33 on the clock, and went into halftime up 45-17. The first half shooting stats for the Mids were breathtaking: 17-of-24 (70.8 percent) from the field, 9-of-13 (69.2 percent) from deep.

Navy opted to sub out its starting five as the second half wore on, going with a lineup entirely of reserves for the last 7:25 of the game. The Mids led by as many as 33 down the stretch before taking the 23-point win.

The Mids finished the game 14-of-22 (63.6 percent) from the arc, one made 3 shy of the League record. They also dominated the glass 36-23 and distributed the ball to the tune of 21 assists on 24 baskets.

Loyola hit on 35.4 percent (17-of-48) from the floor but only 2-of-7 from the arc.