The American University women's basketball team will look to become the third Patriot League team in history to go 12-0 in conference play when it hosts Army on Saturday, February 18 at 2 p.m.
American (19-6, 11-0 PL) wrapped up its third Patriot League regular season title in a row -- and fourth in the last five seasons -- with Wednesday's 55-52 comeback win at second-place Navy. The Eagles faced a 15-point halftime deficit, but opened the second half on a 13-0 spurt to nearly draw even. A few minutes later, a bucket by Lisa Strack at the 7:46 mark gave AU its first lead since 8-7 in the first half. Leading by one late in the game, a pair of clutch Strack free throws with 10 seconds remaining extended AU's advantage to three. Navy came back the other way and its last-second three-point attempt for the tie was off the mark as AU held on for the win.
The Eagles have now won 11 games in a row, matching the program record for most consecutive wins. AU reached 11 in a row twice before in program history, both which came in the previous four seasons. In 2007-08, American had an 11-game run as well as last season from November 28, 2011 through January 22, 2011. The Eagles can set a new program record with a win Saturday over Army.
A win on Saturday will also give the Eagles their 20th victory of the season, which would be the third straight season they would reach at least 20 triumphs. AU has recorded 20 wins on five previous occasions in program history.
Two previous Patriot League teams have reached 12-0 in conference play in the 22-year history of the conference. Both 12-0 teams were Holy Cross in 1990-91 and 1996-97 back when the league schedule was 12 total games (due to only seven conference schools). No Patriot League team has gone undefeated in a 14-game conference schedule.
Army (13-13, 7-4 PL) sits in a tie for second place in the conference standings with Navy. The Black Knights have won four of their last five games, including a 62-47 win over Colgate on Wednesday. Army features the top-two scorers in the conference, Anna Simmers (14.2 ppg) and Jen Hazlett (13.7 ppg).
American defeated the Black Knights in the two teams' previous meeting this season, a 40-39 victory in Christl Arena on January 21. Strack knocked down two free throws for American with 0.9 seconds remaining to give AU the victory. The contest featured 11 ties and eight lead changes.
AU leads the all-time series against Army, 15-9, which includes victories in four of the last five meetings. The Eagles are 8-3 versus Army in Bender Arena.
Prior to Saturday's game, AU's three senior student-athletes -- Ebony Edwards, Tori Halvorsen, and Strack -- will be honored in a Senior Day ceremony. The class has registered an 82-37 record in their four years, which makes them the winningest senior class in program history. This includes a 43-10 mark in Patriot League play with three conference regular season championships.
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