Delivering American University's news and views since 1925. | Friday, February 22, 2019

Women’s basketball fades late in 68-57 loss

Army’s combination of outside shooting and interior rebounding foil the Eagles

Women’s basketball fades late in 68-57 loss

With six minutes left in the fourth quarter Saturday afternoon in Bender Arena, senior forward Lauren Crisler’s lay-up off a pick-and-roll pulled the AU women’s basketball team within two of the Army Black Knights. The Eagles would be outscored 15-6 the rest of the quarter en route to their second straight loss, 68-57.

Army (18-6, 9-4 PL) shot 66.7 percent from the three-point line and finished with three players in double-figure points to claim sole position of third place in the Patriot League. The loss drops AU (11-13, 8-5 PL) to fourth place in the league with five regular season games remaining before the Patriot League Tournament.

Army started the game shooting well, going 50 percent from the field in the first quarter behind eight first-quarter points from junior guard Daizjah Morris. The Eagles trailed by as many as 10 in the first half before slowly chipping away at the Black Knights’ lead.

Junior guard Emily Kinneston and sophomore guard Kaitlyn Lewis helped AU ease back into the game, and the Eagles closed the half strong, using an 8-4 run to cut their halftime deficit to five points.

“I think we struggled today making layups early and Army got on the offensive boards which hurt us as well,” head coach Megan Gebbia said.

The third quarter was a back-and-forth affair, with each team trading baskets unable to pull away. A close-range basket from Crisler with two minutes remaining in the third quarter gave the Eagles their first lead of the game at 46-45. The Eagles would keep the score close until a barren spell of over four minutes late in the fourth quarter allowed Army to extend their lead to an insurmountable margin.

Kinneston finished with 20 points for the Eagles, while Lewis added 12 points and five assists. The Eagles held Army’s leading scorer sophomore forward Madison Hovren in check for the first half before Hovren came to life with 11 second half points. Morris’ season-high 15 points led the way for the Black Knights, who outrebounded the Eagles 43-23.

The Eagles return to Bender Arena Wednesday at 7:00 pm to host last-place Lafayette as they attempt to end their two-game losing streak.

“We’re going to be working on a lot of defense the next few days,” Gebbia said. “Lafayette’s a good team, they’re starting to feel good about themselves, they’re playing harder [and] playing better, so we can’t take anyone lightly.”

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