Leopards Eye Upset in Regular Season Finale
March 2, 2013
The Lafayette women’s basketball team looks for a season sweep against American on Saturday afternoon in its final game of the 2012-13 regular season. The Leopards (11-17, 4-9) take on the Eagles (14-13, 7-6) for the second time this season at 2 p.m. inside Bender Arena. American holds a 27-5 advantage over Lafayette in its history, but the Maroon and White took the last meeting on Feb. 2 in Easton, 49-47. Lafayette has never swept the season series with American.
Based on the outcomes of Saturday’s contests, Lafayette has the possibility to be playing at five different locations in the quarterfinal round of the Patriot League Tournament. The most likely matchup would be a rematch with American in Washington, D.C., while the least likely would involve a three-way tie for third in which Lehigh ends up above American and Holy Cross and the Leopards would make the short trip to Bethlehem to take on the Mountain Hawks. With a win over American, the Leopards can be no lower than a seven seed and no higher than a six, while a loss would put them in either the seventh or eighth positions.
LEOPARDS’ LAST TIME OUT
In a game where field goals were few and far between for both teams, sophomore Brya Freeland’s halfcourt heave at the buzzer fell short and Lafayette dropped a 39-37 decision to Colgate on Wednesday evening at Kirby Sports Center.
Junior co-captain Danielle Fiacco and sophomore co-captain Emily Homan combined for 12 blocks, including Fiacco’s career-high seven stuffs. Offensively, Fiacco led the way for the Leopards (11-17, 4-9) with 11 points on 7-of-8 from the free-throw line. Homan grabbed 10 boards and added six points, while sophomore Maddie Peabody chipped in with seven points and seven rebounds.
The Leopards struggled from the field, making just two field goals in the second half and went 9-for-48 in the game (18.8%). They held a 50-40 rebounding advantage, but were only able to register nine second-chance points. Colgate’s Jhazmine Lynch led the way for the Raiders (9-19, 3-10) with 11 points and four steals. The opposition went 14-of-59 from the field (23.7%) and 4-of-17 from the three-point line (23.5%).
SCOUTING THE EAGLES
The Eagles come into Saturday afternoon’s Patriot League regular season finale at 14-13 overall and 7-6 in the League. Picked to finish second in the preseason poll, American is currently tied for third in the League. The Eagles had lost four straight before winning their last game against Bucknell. The Leopards took the first meeting in Easton, 49-47.
Junior guard Alexis Dobbs leads the Eagles in scoring with 11.1 points per game, assists (3.8 per contest) and steals (52). Dobbs is also the Eagles’ biggest threat from distance, knocking down 50 three-pointers this season.
Sophomore Jen Dumiak also averages 11.1 points per game and is second on the team in assists (2.8 apg). Junior guard Geleisa George has picked up her play during conference games, and now averages 9.6 points per contest.
Senior center Stephanie Anya leads the Eagles in rebounding (4.9 RPG), while also averaging 4.8 points a night. Sophomore forward Arron Zimmerman rounds out the starting five for the Eagles, chipping in 4.1 points and 3.6 boards per game.
ROAMING THE SIDELINE
Lafayette head coach Dianne Nolan enters today’s matchup with a career record of 547-474 and a 30-58 mark in her third year at Lafayette. On the other side, American head coach Matt Corkery is in his fifth season with the Eagles holding a career record of 100-52.
LID ON THE BASKET
In Lafayette’s game versus Colgate on Wednesday evening in Kirby Sports Center, the Raiders and Leopards each had their struggles putting the ball in the basket. The teams combined for the lowest scoring game (39-37, 76 pts.) since Jan. 18, 1995, when the Maroon and White dropped a 39-31 decision to Fordham.
On Wednesday the teams combined to go 23-for-107 from the field (21.5%) and Lafayette notched just two field goals in the second half.
With her seven rebounds in the game against Colgate on Wednesday evening, junior Danielle Fiacco sits in the 10th spot in the Lafayette record books for career rebounds with 628. Additionally, Fiacco became just the seventh player in Lafayette history to snag more than 200 rebounds in multiple seasons, doing so against Lehigh on Feb. 23. She currently sits at 211 for the year, grabbing 248 boards in 2011-12.
THE ALL-TIME SERIES
Lafayette’s hard-fought 49-47 win over American on Feb. 2 ran the all-time series to 27-5 in favor of the Eagles. The Eagles are 15-0 all-time against the Leopards in Washington, D.C. and 11-4 in Easton.