Jan. 4, 2013
The Lafayette women's basketball team returns home after taking second in the Fordham Holiday Classic this past weekend. The Leopards (5-8) host the Brown Bears (5-6) on Saturday at 2 p.m. inside Kirby Sports Center. Lafayette is coming off a 66-54 loss to Providence on Dec. 30. The Leopards are 2-2 against the Bears in their history and lost the last meeting on Dec. 7, 2002 in Providence, R.I., 71-50.
LEOPARDS' LAST TIME OUT
Despite having four of its five starters finish in double figures in points, the Lafayette women's basketball team fell to Providence, 66-54, in the final of the Fordham Holiday Classic on Sunday at Rose Hill Gym in Bronx, N.Y.
Junior captain Danielle Fiacco again finished with nine rebounds to go along with her 15 points and five blocks. She was the sole member on the All-Tournament team after her 16-point, nine-rebound performance in the win over Fordham on Saturday.
Sophomores Brya Freeland, Emily Homan and Linnel Macklin also notched double-figure points with 12, 10 and 10, respectively. Providence point guard Symone Roberts led all scorers with 16 points on just 3-of-13 shooting, racking up most of her points from the free-throw line, going 9-of-10 from the charity stripe.
Lafayette's ball security issues continued as they turned it over 25 times, leading to 21 Friar points. Providence earned the majority of its points from the free-throw line, knocking down 23-of-32 attempts compared to just 10-of-18 shooting from the foul line for the Leopards.
WHAT CAN BROWN DO FOR YOU?
Brown comes into Saturday's contest at 5-6 after defeating Army 48-45 on Wednesday. Junior guard Lauren Clarke leads the team in scoring and is fifth in the Ivy League with 13.9 points per game, boasting a 42.9 percent shooting mark from beyond the arc. Senior guard Sheila Dixon averages a team-high 5.8 rebounds a game, adding 13.3 points per contest in eight games. The Bears make a shade over seven three-point field goals per game and shoot it from distance at a 32 percent clip.
ROAMING THE SIDELINE
Lafayette head coach Dianne Nolan enters today's matchup with a career record of 541-465 and a 24-49 mark in her third year at Lafayette. On the other side, Brown head coach Jean Marie Burr is in her 25th season with the Bears, holding a career record of 310-348.
Saturday's game will mark the first of two Ivy League opponents Lafayette faces this season, the second being Columbia, a team the Leopards will face on Wednesday. Lafayette is 55-71 all-time against Ivy League members and has faced all eight members at some point in its history. The Patriot League is 6-4 against the Ivy's this season.
HISTORY AT THE HELM
In its first 13 games of the 2012-13 season, the Leopards have faced a plethora of iconic head coaches. Lafayette has faced six coaches with 25+ years of coaching experience in Harry Perretta (35, Villanova), Jim Foster (35, Ohio State), Agnes Berenato (29, Pittsburgh), Stephanie Gaitley (27, Fordham), John Thurston (26, St. Francis Brooklyn) and Jean Marie Burr (25, Brown).
Head coach Dianne Nolan's halftime speeches have been working this season, as the Leopards have clearly been a second-half team so far this year. Lafayette has posted a higher number in the second half compared to the first in all but three games in 2012-13 (Pittsburgh, St. Joseph's and St. Francis Brooklyn). Against Providence, the Leopards doubled their first-half output in the second, putting up 36 points in the final 20 minutes compared to 18 points in the opening stanza.
GIVE IT AWAY, GIVE IT AWAY, GIVE IT AWAY NOW
Turnover struggles have led to the majority of Lafayette's losses so far this season. The Leopards have turned it over 20+ times in seven of their games this year and have racked up 25 turnovers in their last two games against Fordham and Providence. Lafayette's best performances came against St. Francis Brooklyn and Wagner as it committed just 12 turnovers in each of those contests.
Junior Madeline Fahan returned to action against St. Francis Brooklyn on Dec. 21, contributing three assists and two rebounds in the 66-63 win. Before suffering a knee injury in the Nov. 27 loss to Rider, she was averaging 5.1 points and 3.9 rebounds for the Maroon and White. Fahan, sitting out the Fordham game with another injury, did see some time against Providence, snagging one rebound in five minutes of action.