Top-Seed American Hosts Lafayette in PL Quarterfinal

Top-Seed American Hosts Lafayette in PL Quarterfinal

The American University women's basketball team opens up play in the 2015 Patriot League Tournament on Friday, March 6, with a quarterfinal match-up versus Lafayette. The top-seeded Eagles will face the eighth-seeded Leopards at 7 p.m. in Bender Arena.

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Video: Patriot League Network/ESPN3
Series Records: American leads, 33-5

The Eagles shot over 50 percent from the field to score a 65-55 victory over Bucknell in their regular-season finale. Senior Jen Dumiak registered her seventh double-double of the season, finishing with a team-leading 16 points and 11 rebounds. Classmate Shaquilla Curtis added 11 points and five assists, while junior Ari Booth also scored in double figures with 10 points. 

American enters Friday's game with a 21-8 overall record. The Eagles claimed the Patriot League regular-season championship with a 16-2 mark in league action.

Senior Jen Dumiak, the Patriot League Player of the Year, averages 17.1 points, 6.1 assists and 5.6 rebounds per game to lead the Eagles. Third-team All-Patriot League selections Michelle Holmes and Arron Zimmerman add 10.9 and 9.7 points per game, respectively, while Holmes also averages a team-high 6.6 rebounds per contest.

American also boasts the Patriot League Defensive Player of the Year in senior Shaquilla Curtis. In addition to her status as the Eagles' top defender, Curtis averages 7.4 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game.

Lafayette has compiled a 14-18 overall record on the season and finished eighth in the Patriot League standings with a 6-12 ledger in league play. The Leopards are coming off a first-round victory over ninth-seed Loyola Maryland, defeating the Greyhounds, 58-46, on Wednesday evening.

First-team All-Patriot League pick Emily Homan leads Lafayette with 16.6 points and 7.8 rebounds per contest. Also averaging in double figures scoring is third-team all-league honoree Jamie O'Hare with 11.8 points per game.

American swept both contests against Lafayette this season, defeating the Leopards 66-43 in Washington on Jan. 17, while earning a 74-58 victory in Easton, Pa., on Feb. 14.

In the Eagles' home win, junior Michelle Holmes scored a career-high 23 points to lead American's offense, while senior Jen Dumiak added eight points and a school-record 13 assists. Meanwhile, senior Arron Zimmerman was AU's leading scorer at Lafayette, finishing with 16 points. Dumiak added 15 points and 11 assists, while senior Shaquilla Curtis pitched in 10 points.

In the latest Patriot League statistical rankings, American leads the league in field goal percentage (.440), assists per game (15.3) and assist/turnover ratio (1.1), while ranking second in scoring offense (62.8), scoring margin (+5.2), free throw percentage (.723) and three-point field goal percentage (.327).

Meanwhile, senior Jen Dumiak leads the way individually, ranking first in the Patriot League in assists per game (6.1), free throw percentage (.925) and assist/turnover ratio (2.5), while ranking second in scoring (17.1), field goal percentage (.515) and minutes played per game (37.9).

Bucknell currently ranks second in the Patriot League in three-point field goal percentage defense (.284), blocked shots per game (4.0) and three-point field goals made per game (5.7).

Individually, Emily Homan ranks fourth in the league in scoring (16.6) and third in rebounding (7.8) and blocked shots per game (2.1), while Jamie O'Hare is second in three-point field goals made per game (2.0) and fourth in three-point field goal percentage (.376) and assists per game (3.6).

As the 2015 regular-season Patriot League champion, American brought home its fair share of hardware when the league's major awards were announced earlier this week. The Eagles captured three of the four awards, with head coach Megan Gebbia earning Coach of the Year accolades, senior Jen Dumiak selected as the Player of the Year and senior Shaquilla Curtis chosen as the Defensive Player of the Year.

In addition, Dumiak was selected as the Patriot League Women's Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year, marking the fourth straight season that the award was granted to an American player.

American finished with three All-Patriot League honorees, led by first-team selection Jen Dumiak. Also receiving recognition were forwards Michelle Holmes and Arron Zimmerman, who were each named to the third team.

Senior Jen Dumiak concluded the regular season with her fifth Lids Team Sports Patriot League Women's Basketball Player of the Week award of the year, as well as her third AU GEICO Student-Athlete of the Week award. She received the honor for her performance in the Eagles' final regular-season victories over Navy and Bucknell.

Dumiak carried American to a 41-29 victory at Navy, finishing with 22 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field. Meanwhile, she posted her seventh double-double of the season in the regular-season finale versus Bucknell, registering 16 points and 11 rebounds.

Senior Jen Dumiak ranks among the top 20 nationally in three statistical categories, rating second in free throw percentage (.925). She also ranks 16th in both assist/turnover ratio (2.46) and assists per game (6.1). Meanwhile, she also ranks 40th nationally in field goal percentage with a mark of .515.

As a team, the Eagles rank in the top 50 in several categories, including assist/turnover ratio (1.13), where they rate 28th. American is also ranked 30th in turnovers per game (13.5), 32nd in field goal percentage (.440), 42nd in scoring defense (57.7) and 47th in assists per game (15.3).

The winner of Friday's Patriot League quarterfinal will advance to the semifinal round on Monday, March 6, to face the winner of the Bucknell-Navy match-up.