Leopards Close out Regular Season on Senior Day
March 1, 2014
EASTON, Pa. - Lafayette closed out the Patriot League regular season with a 64-53 loss to Army on Saturday afternoon at Kirby Sports Center.
Prior to the game, Lafayette honored its four seniors: Madeline Fahan, Danielle Fiacco, Kristan Liddle and Kelly Loughney, all of whom were in the starting lineup along with with sophomore Jamie O'Hare.
Fiacco, already the school and Patriot League career leader in blocked shots, set another personal milestone, surpassing the 1000-point barrier with eight points in the first half.
Seven and a half minutes into the first half, the game was tied at 17-17. Army spun off an 11-2 run. Four Black Knight players got in on the action, including Jen Hazlett who hit a three-pointer and knocked down a pair of free throws. Army led 28-19 with 7:43 left in the half.
Army still led by eight when Brya Freeland hit one of two free throws coming out of the under-four minute media timeout. O'Hare had the Leopards storming back before the intermission, hitting a pair of three-pointers, the second coming with 33 seconds left in the half with Lafayette trailing 34-32.
On the last Army possession, Fiacco stole the ball from Army guard Kelsey Minato. Fahan took off down the court and missed the lefthanded layup, but Fiacco was there for the putback at the buzzer. Her timely play tied the game at 34-34 and gave Fiacco her 1000th career point, making her the 17th player in program history to achieve the feat. Fiacco finished the day with 12 points and seven rebounds.
The Leopards shot 52 percent from the floor in the first half to Army's 40 percent, but were outrebounded 18-12.
In the second half, Loughney tied the game 38-38 with 17:33 when she drained a 12-footer. Then, Army ran off seven in a row with baskets by three different players, prompting a Leopard timeout with 14:39 left. Jean Parker's layup gave Army a 45-38 lead.
Linnel Macklin and O'Hare each hit from long distance as part of Lafayette's own 7-0 run that tied the game for the seventh and final time at 45-45 with 11:10 remaining.
Minato hit a three-pointer on the next Army possession and the Black Knights led the rest of the way. Minato, who finished with a game-high 20 points while playing all 40 minutes, stretched Army's lead to 54-47 with 6:46 left.
The Leopards did not go away quietly, however. Fiacco took an O'Hare feed in the paint and converted the layup. On the play, Hazlett fouled out of the game, finishing with 13 points and a game-high nine rebounds. Fiacco missed the accompanying free throw and Lafayette trailed 56-53 with 3:37 remaining.
With 2:50 left in the game, Aimee Oertner (10 points) heaved a turnaround jumper just before the shotclock buzzer to give Army the 58-53 advantage. Lafayette turned it over on the next two offensive possessions and was forced to foul. Army made six straight free throws in the final minute to stretch the final margin to 64-53.
O'Hare led the Leopards with 16 points, coming on four three-pointers. Both teams shot 38 percent from the floor, but Army converted 16-of-18 (89%) at the free throw line compared to 7-of-14 (50%) for the Maroon and White. Each team hit six three-pointers and the Black Knights held a 40-32 rebounding advantage.
Lafayette holds the No. 6 seed in the Patriot League Tournament and will not play in the first round on Tuesday. The Leopards will play in the Patriot League Tournament Quarterfinals on Thursday at No. 3 seed American.