WASHINGTON - A strong first quarter pulled the American University women's basketball team to a decisive 64-42 victory over UMBC on Wednesday as the Eagles continue to dominate on their home court.
American now rises to 4-3 on the season while the Retrievers tabbed their second consecutive loss to fall to 6-2.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The Eagles dominated the first quarter, 30-8, behind a 13-point effort from senior Kaitlyn Lewis who shot 5-for-7 from the field and 3-for-4 from 3-point range.
- AU opened with a 15-0 run before the Retrievers were finally able to get on the board with a three from Tyler Moore at the 6:48 mark.
- A series of turnovers and two steals from Lewis held the Retrievers at bay until the final three minutes of play when a pair of quick UMBC baskets cut the 27-point lead down to 22 points.
- Both teams struggled with shooting during the second quarter as the Eagles spread their advantage by three points with a 10-7 run heading into halftime.
- The Eagles were held to only 30.8 percent (4-13) shooting from the field compared to the 64.7 percent (11-17) from the first quarter.
- Senior Elina Koskimies stepped up and led the team with six of their ten points, shooting 2-for-2 from the perimeter.
- The Eagles' 25-point lead at the half (40-15) is the largest halftime lead since the 2015-16 season when AU led Boston University by 27 after the first half at 39-12.
- The shooting woes continued in the second half with AU hitting only 5-for-15 in the third quarter and 3-for-16 in the fourth as the Retrievers closed the gap by three points.
- Lewis led the team with a season-high 16 points alongside Koskimies, followed by classmate Cecily Carl with 10 points. Carl, who was recognized in a pregame ceremony for hitting her 1,000th career-point last week, also led the squad on the boards with six rebounds while Lewis pitched in a team-high five assists.
- The Eagles emptied their bench during the second half, resting their starters after playing a tough four-game schedule over seven days last week, including three consecutive games during the Rainbow Wahine Showdown in Honolulu.
- Freshman Maddie Doring led off the bench with six points, followed by three from freshman Taylor Brown and two from both freshman Jade Edwards and senior Morgan Bartner. Freshman Emily Fisher also added three assists while Edwards threw up a pair of blocks and brought down five rebounds.
- American closed the game with 37.7 percent shooting from the field (23-61) and 42.3 percent from three-point range.
- The Eagles landed in the record book with 11 made three-pointers, tying for the No. 4 spot for single-game performances in program history.
- The Retrievers were led by Janee'a Summers' 15 points and nine rebounds. Lucrezia Costa added a game-high 11 rebounds.
- UMBC shot 29.0 percent from the field (18-62) and 23.8 percent from three-point range (5-21).
- American closed the game with only eight turnovers while forcing 17 from UMBC, butt trailed on the boards, 47-37.
- This win extends the Eagles' undefeated run at home to 23 consecutive games dating back to the 2016-17 season, and also puts head coach Megan Gebbia only one win away from her 100th career victory.
American will be on the road for the next three weeks with games at Virginia (Dec. 5), Penn State (Dec. 16) and High Point (Dec. 20). The Eagles' next home game is at 2 p.m. on Dec. 29 against Ohio.
For the latest on American University Women's Basketball, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_WBasketball.