HONOLULU – Double-figure performances from senior Elina Koskimies and junior Kaitlyn Marenyi propelled the American University women's basketball team to a 69-57 win over host Hawaii to kick off the three-game series at the Rainbow Wahine Showdown on Friday.
The Eagles enter Saturday's matinee against No. 8 Stanford with a 3-1 overall record while the Rainbow Wahine will face off against FGCU at 1-5 on the season.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The Eagles took advantage of their 40 free throw opportunities, shooting an impressive 90 percent for 36 points from the line to tie the program-record (36-48) against East Carolina (Jan. 20, 1995).
- Four Eagles shot perfect games from the charity stripe, starting with a 6-for-6 performance from Marenyi en route to her 16-point tally. Senior Kaitlyn Lewis (4-4), senior Morgan Bartner (4-4) and freshman Jade Edwards (2-2) also failed to miss from the line.
- Koskimies hit a career-high 13-for-14 from the line and led the team with 23 points, falling just shy of tying her career-high (24) from last season. The only player to have scored in double-figures in all four games so far this season, she now leads the team with a 14.5 ppg average.
- Already one of the top three-point performers in program history, Koskimies opened the game with a milestone as she hit her 100th-career trey with 3:30 remaining in the first quarter.
- Sophomore Indeya Sanders also walked away with a career-high performance, leading the team with eight rebounds.
- Senior Morgan Bartner stepped up in a big way after early fouls limited minutes for senior Cecily Carl. Bartner, who had to sit out last season due to NCAA eligibility rules, helped lead the team on the boards with a career-high five rebounds while also pitching in a career-high eight points.
- Sanders also added eight points while senior Kaitlyn Lewis closed with nine on the day.
- The Eagles shot 29.2 percent (14-48) from the field and 27.8 percent (5-18) from the perimeter.
- AU led Hawaii on the boards, 36-25, and earned 25 points off turnovers while the Rainbow Wahine converted only 18.
- Hawaii was also led by a pair of double-figure performers with 19 points from Makenna Woodfolk and a dozen from Leah Salanoa. Woodfolk added a game-high 10 boards to complete the double-double.
- The Rainbow Wahine closed with 46.7 percent (21-45) shooting from the field, 25 percent (6-24) from three-point range, and 56.3 percent (9-16) from the charity stripe.
- The two teams battled throughout the first 20 minutes with seven lead changes and six ties before halftime.
- A final-second jumper from Lewis put AU at a four-point advantage heading into the break and, with the exception of a brief two-point margin early in the fourth quarter, the Rainbow Wahine were unable to edge any closer to the Eagles.
- American struggled from the field during the fourth quarter, shooting only 4-for-9 in the final 10 minutes. But a flurry of late fouls from Hawaii helped the Eagles spread the margin as they went 18-for-20 from the charity stripe, including 16 of their final 12 points in the last five minutes of play.
The Rainbow Wahine Showdown continues on Saturday as AU faces off against No. 8 Stanford at 5 p.m. ET (noon MT) in the Stan Sheriff Center. The Cardinal also opened the weekend with a win as they topped FGCU on Friday, 88-65. American will conclude the Thanksgiving weekend road trip on Sunday with a 5 p.m. ET matchup against FGCU.
The Eagles will return home on Wednesday, Nov. 28, to face UMBC at 7 p.m. in Bender Arena.
- General admission to all AU women's basketball home games at Bender Arena are available throughout the season on AUEagles.com/Tickets.
- Bring a group and save over 40% off end zone reserved seating
- 10+ Group Rate: $3 per person
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- Individual game tickets are available for $8 for adults and $5 for youth (17 and below) and seniors (over 65). Military members, veterans, and AU students are invited to join the Eagles for free admission with a valid ID.
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For the latest on American Women's Basketball, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_WBasketball.