EASTON, Pa. - Another strong fourth quarter, and a third-consecutive +20-point performance for senior Cecily Carl pulled the American University women's basketball team to its 14th consecutive win on Saturday with a 67-57 victory over Lafayette.
The Eagles head into their final road game of the regular season with an 18-8 overall record, 14-1 in the Patriot League, while the Leopards fall to 7-19 overall and 2-13 in the league.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Senior Cecily Carl continues to dominate in the latter half of the conference schedule as she led the Eagles with 24 points off 8 of 14 from the field, 2 of 5 from three-point range, and a near-perfect 6 of 7 from the line.
- Senior Elina Koskimies joined her in double-figures for the first time in six games, scoring 18 points off 5 of 11 from the field, 4 of 9 from the perimeter, and a perfect 4 of 4 from the line.
- Junior Kaitlyn Marenyi rounded out the double-figure scoring with 10 points while pitching in a team-high four assists alongside Koskimies.
- The Eagles shot 40.9 percent from the field (18-44), 38.9 percent from beyond the arc (7-18), and 88.9 percent from the charity stripe (24-27).
- Natalie Kucowski and Alex Cantwell both paced the Leopard with 15 points and seven rebounds each followed by 14 points from Drew Freeland.
- Lafayette shot 39.6 percent from the field (21-53), 27.8 percent from 3-point range (5-18), and 62.5 percent from the line (10-16).
- The Eagles struggled on the boards, pulling down 24 rebounds to Lafayette's 39. The Leopards held a 12-0 edge in second-chance points and led 26-18 in the paint, but AU dominated in points off turnovers, 28-10.
- American gave up only eight turnovers on the day to Lafayette's 15.
- The Eagles had one of their strongest starts in recent games with a 10-2 run behind a pair of treys from Koskimies in the opening minutes.
- Koskimies opened with 3-for-3 shooting from the perimeter for a team-high 11 points by the end of the first stanza.
- Lafayette responded in kind, though, going on an 8-0 run in the final two minutes to knot the score at 17-17 heading into the second quarter.
- AU opened the second with a quick five points behind a pair of baskets from Carl, including her first three of the day.
- The Eagles maintained the lead until the final four minutes when a three from Cantwell and pair of free throws from Kucowski gave the Leopards their first lead of the game at 28-27.
- The two teams traded baskets for the remainder of the half, knotting the score four more times before another Cantwell basket in the final 35 seconds gave Lafayette the 37-35 edge heading into the break.
- Carl had a response for nearly every basket from the Leopards in the third quarter as she scored all of AU's six points in the first 5:00 of the half to keep Lafayette within reach.
- A pair of free throws and a three from Marenyi put AU back up by two with 1:32 left in the stanza but for the third time, Cantwell had the final say as she tied the score back up at 46-46 heading into the fourth quarter.
- As has been the story throughout nearly the entire conference season, the Eagles dominated the final 10 minutes, outscoring Lafayette 21-11 after another Carl trey sparked a 12-2 run midway through the stanza.
- With 3:03 left in the game, sophomore Indeya Sanders came away with a clutch steal, running nearly the length of the court for the layup to bring AU up by five at 58-53.
- The Leopards wouldn't let American get off another shot from the field as fouls on Marenyi, Sanders, and Koskimies put the Eagles on the line six times in the final minute where they hit five to build up the final 10-point advantage.
The Eagles now look forward to their final road game of the regular season on Wednesday when they travel to Holy Cross for a 6:05 p.m. tip. AU will return home to close out the season against Bucknell on Saturday, March 2, and Navy on Wednesday, March 6.
For the latest on American University Women's Basketball, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_WBasketball.