WASHINGTON - Junior Emily Kinneston just missed out on a career night on Wednesday, Feb. 15, leading the American University women's basketball team to a dominating victory over Lafayette, 75-45.
The Eagles rise to 12-13 for the season and 9-5 in the Patriot League while the Leopards fall to 2-24 overall and 1-13 in the PL.
Kinneston was just one of ten Eagles to contribute to AU's third-highest point tally of the season. She broke into the 20-point range for the fourth time this season and was only two points shy of tying her career-high with 24 for the night. She tied with sophomore Elina Koskimies for a team-high four assists and contributed another five rebounds.
Koskimies led the squad on the boards for the first time this season, crushing her career-high with ten rebounds.
Senior Lauren Crisler was the only other Eagle to tally in the double-figures with 11 points and six rebounds. Junior Michael Harris also put up a good performance, earning her first start of the season and contributing eight points and three rebounds out her team-high 28 minutes of play.
The Eagles shot 46.8 percent from the field, hitting 29 of their 62 attempts, and brought down a season-high 48 rebounds.
Lafayette was led by freshman Olivia Gumbs' 14-point tally and senior Ashley Lutz's seven rebounds. The Leopards, who averaged 34.4 percent from the field heading into the contest, were held to only 26.8 percent off of 15-of-6, and went only 16.7 percent from the perimeter (3-of-18).
Although it took a couple minutes to get into the scoring rhythm, with the first points of the game coming out of the third minute, AU quickly took control of the game, going on a 12-4 run out of the gate to build a 16 point lead by the end of the first quarter, 23-7.
Senior Lauren Crisler was the first to get on the board for the Eagles, and closed the quarter with a team-high nine points.
Heading into the first break, the Eagles shot 50 percent from the field (9-of-18) while the Leopards struggled to sink a shot, shooing only 15.4 percent off of 2-of-13.
AU continued building its lead through the second period, eventually gaining a 26-point edge with 19 points in the quarter to Lafayette's 11.
Kinneston closed the half already well into the double-figures with 15 points to lead the Eagles. AU's reserves also contributed throughout the second quarter, with sophomores Michaela Nieuwenhuizen and Elina Koskimies, juniors Kate Bond and Io Chaney, and freshman Katie Marenyi coming off the bench to add seven points and seven rebounds.
Head Coach Megan Gebbia continued to look to her bench throughout the second half, with all seven reserves putting in minutes to add 19 points and 24 rebounds behind the nine-point effort of Chaney and Koskimies' 10 rebounds.
The Eagles continued to stretch their lead into the third period, closing with a 32-point lead off of a 12-3 run in the final four minutes.
A set of early baskets from Harris, Nieuwenhuizen and Chaney in the fourth quarter pushed that lead into a game-high 36 points with seven minutes left in the game. Some late free throws from Olivia Gumbs, and a pair of late shots from Harriet Ottewill-Soulsby and Sammy Stipa closed that gap slightly, but a seven-point period from Chaney led the Eagles to a 30-point margin by the final whistle.
American will be back on the road this weekend with a Saturday afternoon matchup against Holy Cross. Tipoff at the Hart Center in Worcester, Mass., will be at 1:05 p.m. on Feb. 25. For the latest on AU Women's Basketball, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_WBasketball.