The Lafayette women’s basketball team looks to make it four straight Patriot League wins on Saturday afternoon for the first time since 1998. The Leopards (10-12, 3-4) take on Navy (13-9, 6-1) for the second time this season at 2 p.m. inside Kirby Sports Center as part of Play 4Kay Day, Alumni Day and Senior Day. Lafayette knocked off American, 49-47, on Saturday afternoon in Easton. The Leopards are 20-39 against the Mids in their history and dropped the last meeting on Jan. 13 in their Patriot League opener in Annapolis, Md., 62-44. As part of the Senior Day festivities, Alicia Manning, Ashley Springer and Samantha Jordan will be honored prior to the game.
LEOPARDS’ LAST TIME OUT
A last-second half-court attempt from American’s Alexis Dobbs strayed left and Lafayette picked up its third-straight league win, 49-47 on Saturday afternoon inside Kirby Sports Center.
The win marks the first time the Leopards have won three straight in the league since they won four straight from Feb. 15-27, 1998. Lafayette also notched its first win over American since Mar. 7, 2009 and its first regular-season win over the Eagles since Jan. 27, 2007.
Sophomore co-captain Emily Homan put together a stellar performance, scoring her sixth double-double of the season with 15 points, 11 rebounds and a season-high five blocks. She went 6-for-12 from the field and 3-for-5 from the charity stripe.
Additionally, freshman Jamie O’Hare tallied nine points and eight rebounds while running the Leopards’ offensive sets. Junior Kelly Loughney chipped in with a career-high three assists.
As a team, the Leopards shot 18-for-53 from the field (34%) compared to American’s 17-for-56 mark (30.4%). The Maroon and White were 2-for-9 from three-point range (22.2%) and 11-for-19 from the foul line.
Saturday afternoon’s contest will mark the final weekend home game for the Lafayette women’s basketball team during the regular season. Therefore, the three seniors from this team will be honored prior to the contest.
Co-captain Alicia Manning from Newtown Square, Pa. is a two-time Patriot League Academic honor roll selection and currently ranks ninth in Lafayette history in three-point field goals made (42).
Ashley Springer, a Columbus, Wisc. native, has played 93 games for the Leopards throughout her career. She is also among the top-20 in three-point field goals made, knocking down 26 during her time on College Hill.
The final senior is Samantha Jordan. Jordan, hailing from Manassas, Va., currently sits 36th in the Lafayette record books for games played with 102. Additionally, she is a three-time Patriot League Academic Honor Roll selection.
SCOUTING THE MIDS
Navy handled Bucknell (61-40) rather easily on Saturday afternoon to keep it at the top of the Patriot League standings. The Mids open the weekend with a 13-9 record overall and a 6-1 mark in conference play. The lone loss came to Army (53-42). That was also the only league game this year in which Navy has allowed more than 50 points. The Mids lead the Patriot League in three-point shooting (34.8%) as well as steals (8.4 per game). Navy is also one of the top rebounding teams, led by junior Jade Geif who was named the 2012-13 Patriot League Preseason Player of the Year.
Geif is one of four starters returning from a squad that went 18-14 overall and won the Patriot League Tournament as the No. 3 seed. That earned Navy a second consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament. Both Geif and Alix Membreno were Second Team All-Patriot League selections in 2011-12.
ROAMING THE SIDELINE
Lafayette head coach Dianne Nolan enters today’s matchup with a career record of 546-469 and a 29-53 mark in her third year at Lafayette. On the other side, Navy head coach Stefanie Pemper is in her fifth season with the Mids, holding a career record of 319-112. PLAY 4KAY
Saturday marks Lafayette women’s basketball’s annual Play 4Kay Day inside Kirby Sports Center. The Leopards are teaming up with the Easton Cancer Center for the second straight year to support the race for the cure to breast cancer. Numerous activities and giveaways will be featured throughout the day. The 2013 Play 4Kay initiative (formerly known as WBCA Pink Zone) is an opportunity for a nation of coaches to raise breast cancer awareness and funds for research on the court, across campuses, in communities and beyond. Since its inception in 2007, the Play 4Kay initiative has raised over $2 million to support women’s cancer research. The Kay Yow Cancer Fund is the official charity of the initiative.
FOUND A PEANUT
Sophomore guard Maddie Peabody has taken advantage of her increased minutes over the past few games with Brya Freeland out due to a back injury. Peabody notched career-highs in minutes with 28 each in the wins over Lehigh and Colgate and dropped a career-high nine points against the Mountain Hawks. Against Colgate, she set another career mark, this time in rebounds, as the 5’5” guard went in among the trees and ripped down six boards. Her jumper from the right elbow with 1:39 remaining helped seal the win over American this past Saturday.
THE ALL-TIME SERIES
Navy holds a 39-20 advantage in a series that dates back to Feb. 16, 1980 with a commanding 25-6 advantage in games played in Annapolis. Six of the last nine encounters have been decided by single figures. The home-and-home regular-season series has been split in two of the last three campaigns, including Patriot League Tournament meetings, and both teams have earned a win in the series in five of the last six seasons. The Mids swept the Leopards last season with a 60-55 win in Easton and a 63-47 victory in Annapolis.
‘PARDS ARE ROLLIN
The Lafayette men’s and women’s basketball teams have hit their strides at the same time heading into the midway point of the Patriot League season. The men have won three of their last four, taking down Holy Cross, Lehigh and Colgate before falling to American last weekend. The women are looking for their fourth straight after wins over the Mountain Hawks, Raiders and Eagles. The last time the Leopard women won three straight League games was Jan. 19-26, 2008.