Delivering American University's news and views since 1925. | Monday, February 19, 2018

Women’s basketball wins 13th consecutive game over Loyola Maryland

Harris and Kinneston help Eagles extend second-longest winning streak in program history

Women’s basketball wins 13th consecutive game over Loyola Maryland

Guard Maria Liddane during a recent game against Loyola Maryland. 

The AU women’s basketball team put together another strong team performance Wednesday, widening their lead at the top of the Patriot League standings. The Eagles beat Loyola Maryland 69-56 on Wednesday in Bender Arena. Senior forward Michael Harris and senior guard Emily Kinneston led the team in points, helping AU claim their 13th win in a row.

Harris, Kinneston and senior forward Cecily Carl all assisted in bringing the Eagles (19-4, 12-0 PL) to victory. Harris and Kinneston contributed double digits in points, 14 and 17 respectively, and Carl chipped in 15 rebounds.

“It's great that everyone out on the floor is a threat,” Harris said. “It really contributes to the way that we win, and that's what makes us so dangerous, so I'm grateful that our team is that way.”

AU’s last outing against Army West Point was a nail-biter that finished with an overtime victory. The Eagles appeared to learn from their matchup with the Black Knights, in which the Eagles trailed until late in the fourth quarter. On Wednesday, AU was ahead 32-21 at halftime, but three minutes into the fourth quarter, Loyola closed the gap to two points, and a jump shot or layup stood in the way of another possible overtime game.

“We talked the last two days in practice about how we wanted to stop [their shooting],” head coach Megan Gebbia said. “I think we did an OK job. This was one of the more physical games we’ve played all year – they’re a tough team. Offensive rebounding for them was a plus [and a] minus for us.”

The Greyhounds outscored the Eagles 20-19 in the third quarter and began the fourth quarter strong as well. Loyola’s sophomore guard Alexis Gray gave her team 18 points and made three out of her seven attempted 3-point jump shots.

“I don't feel as though I’m carrying the load … because everyone can step up,” Kinneston said. “If you're put in the situation to take that big shot, it's just about being confident. When it's your fourth year, you know that you can take that shot and be OK whether or not it goes in, [and] you're obviously confident it's going in. Having everyone out on the floor who can score really helps in the end with close games.”

Carl’s 15 rebounds tied her career-best record. Her career-high six assists also led the team.

“Cecily has really developed into a very, very good passer,” Gebbia said. “I told her in the locker room that she's dropping dimes out there, she was like a point guard. She sees the floor extremely well because shes 6 [feet] 3 [inches], and she’s having someone guarding smaller than her; it’s a little easier to see those passes to the rim.”

The Eagles had 13 personal fouls total, and the Greyhounds had 18. Gebbia expressed her frustration with the way the referees called fouls during the game, and she said that they shook up her team.

“You don't know what they're going to call from game to game, so you have to adjust. The consistency [in calling fouls] wasn't there, so I wasn't sure what they were looking for. It got in our players’ heads a little bit – we just said ‘don't expect it and play through it,’” Gebbia said.

kcataudella@theeagleonline.com


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