Alexis Dobbs shines as AU women's basketball stays perfect in Patriot League

Alexis Dobbs shines as AU women's basketball stays perfect in Patriot League
After getting past Army, Tori Halvorsen and the Eagles are the first team to start 12-0 in the Patriot League since Holy Cross completed the feat during the 1996-97 season.

It was Senior Day for the AU women’s basketball team Feb. 18, but it was a sophomore who stole the show.

Alexis Dobbs scored a game-high 20 points, as the Eagles earned a hard-fought 54-48 win over Army (13-14, 7-5 PL) at Bender Arena. With the win, AU continued to add accomplishments to an already special season.

The Eagles (20-6, 12-0 PL) reached the 20-win mark for the third straight year, while becoming the first Patriot League team since 1996-97 to start conference play with 12 straight victories. The 12-game winning streak is the best in program history.

“Each year the program keeps getting better,” said Ebony Edwards, who contributed six points and three steals. “I’ve had winning seasons here, and it feels great.”

Seniors Tori Halvorsen (five points, 10 rebounds) and Lisa Strack (five points, three steals) joined Edwards prior to the game when the trio was honored in a Senior Day ceremony.

The game started out in AU’s favor, but it would be tough to put away a competitive Army squad on the afternoon. The Eagles opened the game on an 8-0 run, before the Black Knights scored 10 of the next 13 points to get themselves back in the game early on.

With Army playing aggressively both on the offensive and defensive end, the game was tight as AU led 15-14 with less than five minutes left in a low-scoring first half.

The Eagles closed the half with seven straight points, as Jen Dumiak’s 3-pointer just before halftime gave AU a 22-14 advantage.

Both teams turned up their play as the second half started, when Army increased their field goal percentage from 21 percent (6-28) in the first half to 43 percent (13-30) in the second half.

Strack’s jumper gave the Eagles their second double-digit lead of the game at 33-23 midway through the second half, but AU quickly got into foul trouble.

The Eagles picked up their seventh team foul with 9:06 left to play, but it didn’t come back to haunt them in the end.

“We need to learn how to play smart,” Strack said about the team’s foul trouble. “They’re a very physical team. We are too, so it’s a team effort.”

After Dobbs knocked down a 3-pointer for a 46-30 lead with 6:30 to go, Army clawed back. The Black Knights cut the deficit to six with less than three minutes left, but there wasn’t enough time for them to complete the comeback.

“It’s about executing and getting the job done against teams that are ready to stop you,” AU Head Coach Matt Corkery said. “I didn’t feel like we executed very well. We need to do a better job of late game press breaks and ball handling.”

The Eagles will next take on Bucknell University Feb. 22 in Lewisburg, Pa., as they inch closer to becoming the first team in conference history to finish 14-0.

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