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Women’s basketball gets off to a hot start against Longwood

Derubbo goes perfect from beyond the arc

The American University women’s basketball team (1-1) won their first game of the season and home opener against the Longwood Lancers (0-2) 81-63 on Nov. 7. 

Despite the home court advantage, American lost the tip-off and started the game on the defensive, with Longwood scoring the first 4 points of the game. After maintaining a tight defense, senior guard Anna LeMaster hit a 3-pointer to give the Eagles their first points of the game. 

A layup from sophomore forward Molly Lavin tied the game. However, the Lancers were able to put 3 more points on the board, and despite Lavin scoring another layup, Longwood kept the lead. 

American kept a strong defense and only allowed Longwood to shoot outside the 3-point line. Despite Longwood holding the lead, senior American guard Riley DeRubbo scored a 3-pointer to keep the Eagles in the game. 

DeRubbo hit a 3-pointer from deep with 20 seconds left on the clock, but Longwood responded with a layup in the last second, ending the first quarter with Longwood ahead 16-15. 

The second quarter started with LeMaster scoring a layup that put the Eagles back in the lead.  DeRubbo and graduate student forward Lauren Stack widened the gap with their respective baskets in the paint. 

American kept up the tight defense and kept Longwood from getting to the key. LeMaster took advantage of the Lancers’ three turnovers in the second quarter to either push the ball down the courtt or reset the play.. This led to more opportunities for DeRubbo to remain hot from 3 and an opportunity for Stack and senior forward Emily Johns to score in the paint.The Eagles ended the half up 11 against Longwood, with a score of 37-26.

The Eagles continued their pressure in the third quarter. Stack and DeRubbo continued to widen the score between the two teams with a combination of free throws, bringing the score to 48-35. 

Senior guard Ivy Bales showed her skills by helping the Eagles reset their defense, which allowed for more offensive opportunities on the other half. American kept things heated in this close match with their defensive plays and their vast offensive arsenal. Lavin and DeRubbo scored more as they moved into the fourth quarter. 

The fourth quarter started with a layup from Johns, sending a message that the Eagles were unwilling to let up. Longwood responded with a basket of their own, showing that despite the score of 57-46, the Lancers were not going to go down without a fight. 

The Eagles maintained their lead by keeping the ball outside and being careful with their plays. Lavin put in both her free throws and DeRubbo scored another 3-pointer to nail in the Eagles’ lead. 

Entering the last minute of the game, American was up ten with a score of 74-64. In their last effort, Longwood put in two sets of free throws, bringing the Lancers within 6 points of the Eagles. Despite the close score, sophomore guard Anna Rescifina and freshman guard Lexi Salazar managed to keep the Eagles calm, ending the game with a score of 81-68.

“I think we played a really tough game with a lot of grit and I think that’s a really good way to start the season,” LeMaster said. 

DeRubbo led the Eagles with 22 points, coming from a perfect 7-for-7 beyond the arc. Lavin followed behind with 15 points and nine rebounds, and Johns contributed 12 points and six rebounds.

American’s next game will be against the George Washington Revolutionaries in D.C. on Nov. 15.

This article was edited by Penelope Jennings, Delaney Hoke and Abigail Pritchard. Copy editing done by Isabelle Kravis and Olivia Citarella.

sports@theeagleonline.com


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