WASHINGTON - The American University women's basketball team closed the January schedule with its first undefeated run in program history on Saturday, tabbing a decisive 67-44 victory over Colgate.
The Eagles now extend their overall win streak to 11-0 with a 10-0 record in the Patriot League, 17-4 overall. The Raiders, on the other hand, continue the hunt for their first conference win with a 0-10 record, 4-17 overall. This ties three other AU women's basketball teams as the second-longest win streak in program history, including the historic 2014-15 squad that closed its' 11-0 run with a Patriot League title to advance into the NCAA Tournament.
Senior Emily Kinneston had her seventh consecutive double-figure performance with a team-high 16 points. Junior Cecily Carl followed with 10 points while senior Michael Harris had a team-high five boards and nine points. Senior Maria Liddane led with four assists.
A total of 11 players contributed to AU's final point tally as Head Coach Megan Gebbia was able to empty her bench in front of the home crowd. The Eagles shot 42.6 percent from the field (23-54), 35.3 percent from three-point range (6-17), and 83.3 percent from the free throw line (15-18). For only the third time in conference play, AU beat an opponent on the boards with 33 rebounds to Colgate's 31.
The Eagles also led the Raiders with 19 assists and had a season-high 14 steals.
Colgate was led by a nine-point effort from freshman Niah Ahart. Junior Mylah Chandler brought down a game-high eight rebounds.
The Raiders shot 33.3 percent from the field, 20 percent from the perimeter, and 84.6 percent from the charity stripe.
Kinneston gave the Eagles an early lead with a 6-0 solo run in the opening minutes before a pair of free throws from Colgate's Haley Greer put the Raiders on the board. A layup from sophomore TaeKenya Cleveland after a trey from junior Elina Koskimies and jumper from Harris put the Eagles up by nine with less than three minutes in the first quarter. A back-and-forth battle in the final two minutes eventually cut that lead down to seven by the break.
AU built one of its largest leads of the game throughout the second quarter, holding the Raiders to only five points while six Eagles contributed to a 17-point run. By the end of the half, AU held a 19-point advantage with a five-point contribution from Harris, four points from freshman Indeya Sanders, and baskets from Carl, Kinneston, and sophomore Katie Marenyi.
The Eagles continued to widen the gap during the third quarter after baskets from Koskimies and Carl, and a three from Kinneston, put AU at a 28-point advantage with two minutes left in the stanza, 48-20. A late run by the Raiders which culminated with a last-second trey from Mackenzie Carroll closed that lead back down to 19 points by the end of the quarter at 48-29.
Senior Kate Bond opened the fourth quarter with first of her three jumpers to regain the 20+ point lead. The Eagles maintained at least a 19-point cushion throughout the final minutes of regulation before closing with a 23-point advantage after a pair of free throws from junior Kaitlyn Lewis closed the game at 67-44.
American will be back in Bender Arena on Saturday, Feb. 3, with a 2 p.m. tipoff against Army West Point. That game will also serve as the celebration of National Girls and Women in Sports Day (NGWSD), and kids of all ages will be invited to join student-athletes from all of AU's varsity women's teams after the game for an autograph session and skills clinics. The event is free for all with a game ticket, and children are asked to wear athletic shoes for the clinic.
Tickets for this and all AU home basketball games can be purchased here. AU students are admitted free to all home games with an AU ID.
For the latest on American University Women's Basketball, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_WBasketball.