CENTER VALLEY, Pa. -- Holy Cross is the only Patriot League women's basketball team in action Tuesday night, as the Crusaders continue their season-opening home stand when they host Jesuit rival Boston College at 7 p.m. at the Hart Center. Holy Cross will try to remain the only unbeaten League team in the season's early going.
Army and Lafayette joined the Crusaders with season-opening wins last weekend, but both had to settle for splits of their first two contests. The Black Knights, who won 65-62 at Wagner Friday thanks to the efforts of Aimee Oertner and Jen Hazlett, suffered a 59-47 setback at home Monday to St. Francis (N.Y.). Lafayette rallied from a halftime deficit to defeat Loyola-Chicago 62-51 Friday evening, and then played very tough before losing 60-54 at Seton Hall Sunday.
American, Bucknell, Lehigh and Navy are still seeking their first wins of the season, and so far all four of those schools have played exclusively on the road. Two of them - Bucknell and Lehigh - play their home openers Wednesday evening. Lafayette returns home that same night to welcome Villanova.
Army returns to the road Thursday night at Fairleigh Dickinson, while Colgate, fresh off a weekend split in Hamilton, N.Y., plays as the away team for the first time Friday when it visits St. Bonaventure.
Patriot League Women's Basketball Quick Hits
Four players have already eclipsed the 20-point plateau this season, and American sophomore Jen Dumiak has done it twice. She scored 21 in the season opener at Western Michigan and poured in 20 more Monday night at Oakland. Holy Cross' Brisje Malone (23) and Bucknell's Shelby Romine (21) have done it as well.
Lafayette already has 18 blocks in the first two games of the season (9.0 blocks per game). The Leopards set the League record in 2011-12 with 6.3 rejections per game (188 in 30 contests).
Army has dominated its first two opponents on the glass, outrebounding them by a 100-61 margin.
Colgate allowed Cornell and Robert Morris to shoot a combined 5 of 28 (17.9 percent) from beyond the arc last weekend. The Raiders went 1-1 in that stretch.
Four Holy Cross players hit double figures in points in the Crusaders' 87-71 win over Yale Friday. Brisje Malone led with 23, while Emily Parker (18), Alex Smith (17) and Lisa Mifsud (11) also contributed offensively.
With 11 rebounds Saturday at Xavier, Bucknell senior Lindsay Horbatuck is just nine away from joining the League's 500 club.
Colgate hit nearly 90 percent of its free throws last weekend, going 25 of 28 from the charity stripe.
Patriot League Weekly Awards
ANACONDA PLAYER OF THE WEEK DANIELLE FIACCO, LAFAYETTEJr., C, Brewster, N.Y. Fiacco began 2012-13 with a pair of strong performances, helping the Leopards get out to a 1-1 start. In Friday's opener, she scored 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting with 15 rebounds and six blocks in Lafayette's 62-51 win over Loyola-Chicago. She scored another 13 points with 10 boards and six more rejections as Lafayette hung tough before falling 60-54 at Seton Hall. For the week, Fiacco shot 11 of 16 (68.8 percent) from the field and averaged 12.5 rebounds per game while going a perfect 4 of 4 at the foul line. It's Fiacco's third career weekly honor and her second naming to the Anaconda Player of the Week nod.
ANACONDA ROOKIE OF THE WEEK AIMEE OERTNER, ARMYFr., F, Upper Darby, Pa. It was a big debut for Oertner, who scored 18 points with 12 rebounds and four blocks in 30 minutes off the bench in the Black Knights' 65-62 win at Wagner Friday night. She's the first freshman in Army history to record a double-double in her collegiate debut, and she shot a team-best 63.6 percent (7 of 11) from the field. She rounded out her stat line with one assist and one steal. Friday's road win over the Seahawks was Army's first season-opening victory away from West Point since 1987.
HONORABLE MENTIONS JEN DUMIAK, AMERICANSo., G, Carlsbad, Calif. Dumiak scored a career-high 21 points with four rebounds and was stellar from the foul line (10 of 12) in American's 57-53 loss at Western Michigan.
JEN HAZLETT, ARMYJr., G/F, Syracuse, Utah Hazlett tied Oertner with a game-high 18 points and chipped in eight boards and three assists in Army's 65-62 win at Wagner.
SHELBY ROMINE, BUCKNELL Jr., G, Centreville, Va. Rombine poured in 21 points on 7-of-16 from the field with four assists and a pair of steals in 21 minutes as Bucknell hung tough before falling 71-62 at Xavier on Saturday.
ALEX SMITH, HOLY CROSSJr., G, Delran, N.J. Smith scored 17 points with eight assists and seven boards in 33 minutes as 2012 Patriot League runner-up Holy Cross defeated Yale 87-71 in Friday's season opener.
KERRY KINEK, LEHIGHFr., F, Whitehall, Pa. Kinek shot 50 percent from the field and logged a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds in Lehigh's loss Friday night at No. 13/15 Cal.
Patriot League Notebook
NAVY CHOSEN TO MAKE IT THREE STRAIGHT The head coaches and sports information directors named two-time defending Patriot League champion Navy as the favorite in 2012-13 in late October. The Mids, led by Preseason Player of the Year junior Jade Geif, are seeking to do something no League squad has done in over a decade - win three straight titles. The first and only program to do it is Holy Cross, which captured four straight championships from 1997-98 to 2000-01. Navy returns four starters from a year ago, all of whom are in their junior seasons. Navy topped the preseason poll with 89 points and eight first-place ballots.
AMERICAN SETS SIGHTS ON TITLE RUN Navy is sure to have stiff competition in the League this season. American, which has won 19 of 20 regular season League games and became the first to post a perfect 14-0 record last year, earned 85 points with six first-places votes in the preseason poll. Matt Corkery enters his fifth season in the nation's capital and boasts the League's highest winning percentage in League play (46-10, .821). The Eagles will be led by junior guard and reigning Scholar-Athlete of the Year Alexis Dobbs in the back court and senior center Stephanie Anya, whose 89 career blocks rank her in the League's all-time top 20.
CRUSADERS CRAVE ANOTHER SHOT Holy Cross hadn't been to the title game of the Patriot League Tournament since a four-year run from 2005-08, but the Crusaders made it back last season and nearly took home the trophy before falling 57-48 at Navy in the championship. Buoyed by a pair of preseason All-League honorees in senior Amy Lepley and junior Alex Smith, Holy Cross hopes to build on a 2011-12 campaign that ended in the quarterfinals of the WBI. Bill Gibbons is in his 28th season on the sidelines in Worcester, Mass. The Crusaders took third in the poll with 70 points and one first-place vote.
SIMMERS LEADS ARMY'S MARCH 2011-12 was a coming out party for Army guard Anna Simmers, who finished her junior campaign leading the Patriot League in scoring at 14.8 points per outing. Now she's looking for bigger and better things at West Point, as the Black Knights seek their first League crown since the dream 2005-06 season. Simmers is part of a formidable 1-2 punch with junior teammate Jen Hazlett, who finished fourth in the League averaging 12.9 points per game a season ago. Hazlett accounted for the League's highest single-season point total last year with 30 points against Colgate, while Simmers' 28 against Lehigh were second.
FIACCO RAISES THE BLOCKING BAR Nobody had reached 100 blocks in a single season in League history until Lafayette center Danielle Fiacco did it in 2011-12. And she didn't just stop there, as she finished with a record-smashing 112 for the season. The 6-foot-7 center began her junior campaign eighth on the League's blocks charts with 183, and has added 12 more so far to move into sole possession of seventh on the League's all-time list with 195. Fiacco's effectiveness is increased by the presence of last season's Rookie of the Year Emily Homan, herself a force at power forward.
LYNCH LOOKS FOR BIG SEASON Colgate's Jhazmine Lynch made history as the program's first Rookie of the Year in 2010. After a junior season in which her playing time was mitigated somewhat in November and December by injury, the senior guard is ready to lead the Raiders toward a League championship one more time. Lynch has plenty of help in the back court in sophomore guards Missy Repoli and Mariah Jones. Colgate's 2011-12 campaign was really a tale of two seasons, as it went 8-12 in its last 20 after a season-opening 10-game skid under first-year head coach Nicci Hays Fort. But the Raiders were in contention for as high as the fifth seed in the League tournament at the end of the regular season, which would've been their highest position in six years.
NON-CONFERENCE TESTS The eight Patriot League teams will have plenty of opportunities to take on tough competition during the course of the non-League slate in the first nine weeks of the season. Some of the notable contests include: Holy Cross hosting Boston College (Nov. 13); Colgate at St. Bonaventure (Nov. 16); Lafayette at Penn State (Nov. 18); American visiting Maryland (Nov. 21); Colgate at Connecticut (Nov. 28); Lehigh at Villanova (Nov. 29); Lafayette entertaining Pittsburgh (Dec. 1); Lafayette at Ohio State (Dec. 9); Navy heading to Marquette (Dec. 19); Holy Cross at Florida (Dec. 28); and Navy visiting Princeton (Jan. 8).
AMERICAN overcame a 12-point second-half deficit and tied the game late, but the Eagles turned over the ball in their final two possessions as Western Michigan snuck out a 57-53 victory Saturday afternoon ... Sophomore Jen Dumiak scored a career-high 21 points, which included a 10-of-12 outing from the foul line ... Michelle Holmes led American on the glass with seven rebounds ... The Eagles took 23 more shots than Oakland but fell 70-60 to the Golden Grizzlie Monday night ... Dumiak recorded her second straight game with at least 20 points when she hit that stat on the nose on 6-of-13 shooting, including a perfect 6 of 6 from the charity stripe ... American used a 6-0 run to get within 60-52 with 1:12 to play, but couldn't complete the comeback ... Geleisa George scored 11 points for the Eagles ... American is now idle until Nov. 21 when they visit No. 5/5 Maryland.
ARMY Head coach Dave Magarity won his 100th game on the Army sidelines as the Black Knights won 65-62 at Wagner Friday night ... The victory snapped a 15-game, 27-year string of season-opening losses on the road ... Freshman Aimee Oertner had a tremendous collegiate debut, tying the game high with 18 points and leading all players with 12 rebounds in 30 minutes off the bench ... Jen Hazlett also had 18 points for Army, which dominated the glass 54-30 ... It was a tough shooting night for Army, which went just 16 of 62 from the field (25.8 percent) as the Black Knights were downed 59-47 by St. Francis (N.Y.) at Christl Arena in their home opener Monday evening ... Freshman point guard Kelsey Minato paced Army with a team-high 15 points, all of which came from beyond the 3-point line ... Hazlett pitched in 12, but she and Anna Simmers combined to shoot 5 of 29 from the floor ... Oertner and Olivia Schretzman each grabbed a team-high 10 boards ... The Black Knights are back on the road Thursday to visit Fairleigh Dickinson.
BUCKNELL played well in the first game under new head coach Aaron Roussell, with Shelby Romine logging a game-high 21 points, but the Bison couldn't overcome a six-minute span in the second half without a field goal in a 71-62 loss at Xavier in the season opener on Saturday ... Sheaira Jones pitched in 10 for the Bison, while Audrey Dotson grabbed 12 rebounds and Lindsay Horbatuck brought down 11 ... Horbatuck is now nine shy of 500 for her career ... The Bison return to the floor Wednesday and will host St. Francis (Pa.) in their home opener at Sojka Pavilion.
COLGATE trailed by seven with just under 10 minutes to play and mounted a late rally, but it came up just short in a 69-65 loss at home to visiting Cornell Friday night ... Missy Repoli led the Raiders with 11 points, while Josie Stockill pitched in 10 off the bench ... It was a tough shooting night for Colgate, which went 5 of 16 on treys and shot under 40 percent for the contest ... Jhazmine Lynch paced the Raiders with 17 points, while Repoli and Stockill hit the double-figure mark for the second straight game in Colgate's 71-55 win over Robert Morris Sunday ... Colgate shot nearly 53 percent from the floor, including a respectable 6-of-14 effort from beyond the arc ... The Raiders boasted a strong defensive showing as well, holding the Colonials to under 40 percent from the field and 2-of-13 shooting on treys ... Colgate's first road test of the season is Friday at St. Bonaventure.
HOLY CROSS snapped a four-game losing streak to Yale, beating the Bulldogs 87-71 at the Hart Center in Worcester, Mass., Friday ... Bri Malone scored a game-high 23 points, while Emily Parker had 18 and Alex Smith poured in 17 ... The Crusaders outscored Yale 48-20 in the paint and scored 23 points off 21 Bulldog turnovers ... It was victory number 516 for head coach Bill Gibbons, now in his 28th year as the head coach ... Preseason All-League selection Amy Lepley did not play against Yale ... The Crusaders are the only League team in action Tuesday night when they host Boston College at 7 p.m.
LAFAYETTE overcame a 12-point halftime deficit thanks to a Danielle Fiacco double-double of 13 points and 15 rebounds as the Leopards defeated Loyola-Chicago 62-51 in Easton, Pa., Friday ... Down 36-27 at the break, the Lafayette defense held the Ramblers to just 15 points in the second half, thanks in part to Fiacco's six blocks ... Loyola shot just 6 of 35 in the second half and 2 of 14 from 3-point range in the contest ... Fiacco posted her second straight double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds, but Lafayette settled for a split of its season-opening weekend with a 60-54 loss at Seton Hall Sunday afternoon ... Fiacco logged six rejections for the second straight outing ... The Leopards came within two with 1:01 to go after Madeline Peabody's trey from the corner, but the Pirates went 4-of-4 from the foul line to ice the game ... The schedule gets no easier for the Leopards, who take on their second straight BIG EAST opponent in Villanova Wednesday night at home ... The contest will be televised on the Lafayette Sports Network.
LEHIGH opened with the toughest contest Friday, falling 80-48 at nationally ranked Cal (No. 13 AP/No. 15 ESPN) ... The Golden Bears opened the game on a 14-0 run and the Mountain Hawks were never able to recover ... Kerry Kinek led Lehigh with a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds ... The Mountain Hawks were outrebounded 53-35 ... Kinek was the only Mountain Hawk to reach double figures against Cal ... Lehigh was held to 32 percent shooting (18 of 56) ... Lehigh is back on the East Coast but still on the road Wednesday when it visits St. Peter's for a 7 p.m. tip.
NAVY couldn't overcome Iona's nearly 50 percent shooting for the game as the Mids fell 74-64 in New Rochelle, N.Y. Friday afternoon ... The Mids did receive a balanced offensive effort as four players reached double figures in points, led by Kara Pollinger's 17 ... M.L. Morrison scored 12 in 20 minutes off the bench, while Alix Membreno pitched in 11 and Audrey Bauer had 10 ... But the Mids, who trailed by one at the half, managed just 22 points in the second ... Navy fell to 0-2 with a 44-40 loss Sunday evening at Stony Brook ... Membreno was a bright spot for the Mids' offense with a team-high 17 points ... The junior from Loxahatchee, Fla., scored with 6:55 remaining to put Navy up 38-37, but that would prove to be its final field goal of the contest ... The Mids are idle until Saturday when they host St. Peter's at 8 p.m.