Junior Liz Leer recorded her first double-double of the season and sophomore Ebony Edwards chipped in a career-high 14 points to push the American University women's basketball team to a 64-49 victory over Army on Wednesday evening in Bender Arena. The win marks the Eagles' fifth straight, as they move to 4-0 in the Patriot League.
(If you're having difficulty watching the Quicktime version of the video, click here to watch it on AU Athletics' YouTube channel)
After an initial basket by Army (8-10, 2-2 Patriot League), American (11-7, 4-0 PL) quickly got going on the offensive end, sparked by a pair of Edwards three-pointers in the first 2:36. Leer followed it up with another trifecta, capping an 11-0 AU run, and forcing the Black Knights to burn an early timeout.
Army tied the score at 13, but the Eagles responded with an 8-0 spurt, which included long-range conversions from Leer and Ashley Yencho. A Michelle Kirk three extended American's lead to 26-15 midway through the first half, and Yencho knocked down another trifecta to give AU a 31-15 advantage with 8:49 to play in the first half.
American gained a 20-point lead, 41-21, on Raven Harris' second three of the half. AU took a 43-24 advantage into halftime on a remarkable nine-of-12 from three-point range in the opening 20 minutes.
The Black Knights came out of intermission strong, cutting the AU lead to 14 before a Harris steal and layup extended the Eagles' advantage to 16, 47-31, with 14:58 to play.
Army would try to make a late run, eventually cutting the deficit to 57-47 with 4:19 remaining, but an Edwards driving layup pushed the AU lead back to 12 and virtually iced the contest. The Eagles would extend their final margin of victory to 64-49.
Edwards, Kirk and Leer each recorded a game-high 14 points to pace AU. Leer grabbed 13 rebounds, earning her third career double-double, and also chipped in three assists and three blocked shots. Edwards's 14 points marked a new career-best. Ohemaa Nyanin also recorded nine rebounds for the Eagles, while Harris led AU with five assists.
Nalini Hawkins led Army with 14 points, while Jessie Coiffard and Erin Anthony each had 10 for the Black Knights.
AU held Army to 29.8 percent from the field (17-57) and outrebounded the Black Knights by a 45-30 margin. AU shot 41.8 percent in the game (23-55), including 52.9 percent (nine-of-15) from behind-the-arc.
The Eagles will look to extend their winning streak on Sunday, January 24 at 2 p.m. when they travel to Worcester, Mass., to take on Holy Cross. The game can be watched live nationwide on CBS College Sports Network.