Feb. 11, 2005
WASHINGTON - An early second half lead and 22 AU turnovers helped the Bucknell Bison capture a 66-60 victory over the American University women's basketball team on Friday night.
Bucknell took a 43-41 lead with 15:48 left in regulation and never looked back, despite AU's offense scoring 60 points for the first time in its last six games. AU cut the lead down to two points with just over two minutes remaining in regulation but solid defense helped extinguish any hopes of a comeback by the home team.
The second half began with Bucknell holding a five-point lead but a 6-2 run put the Eagles within striking distance. A flurry of turnovers squandered each team's attempt at scoring before AU senior Chanel Hunt (Raleigh, N.C./Ravenscroft) was fouled on a driving layup while her shot found its way to the bottom of the basket. The Eagles tied the game at 41-41 after Hunt hit the following free throw. Angel Jordan's (Glendale, Md./Newport School) moving jumper with one second left on the shot clock stopped a 6-0 Bucknell run and put the Eagles within four. After Bucknell opened a comfortable lead, Jordan answered with another shot-clock beating bucket, this one from three point range, to cut the lead to five.
Down by seven with time winding down AU scored on two consecutive possessions to slice into the Bison lead. Bucknell clung to a 62-56 lead heading out of the final media timeout of the game before sophomore Tara Williams (Newport News, Va./Heritage) buried a layup to put the Eagles within four. After converting a Bison turnover into points, senior Joanna Barnes (Washington, D.C./Dunbar) swiped the ball but a foul was called, sending Bucknell to the line. The Bison converted one of two from the charity stripe and the Eagles found themselves down three with under a minute left. Bucknell's defense stepped up their pressure stopping the Eagles on two crucial trips down the floor. Bison senior Brooke Tomovich's jumper with 14 seconds left put the visitors up five and Hope Forter hit one-of-two free throws for the final margin.
The Eagles and Bison had little trouble getting their offenses moving as the two teams found themselves deadlocked at 8-8 early in the first half. The Eagles went up by a bucket and notched three consecutive defensive stops but were unable to convert them into points on the other end of the floor. An Abby Lipskis (Norfolk, Va./Norfolk Collegiate) layup ended a three minute scoring drought for the Eagles and senior Kim Salem (Oakville, Ontario/St. Thomas Aquinas) hit a free throw to give AU a four point lead. Salem hit a high arching shot that put American up by a 17-11 margin.
Bucknell's Lindsey Hollobaugh fired a three pointer to close the gap but senior Damarah Ryhmer (Colorado Springs, Colo./Widefield) answered with a jumper as time on the shot clock was expiring, setting the score at 23-18 with 6:45 remaining in the half. Two successful free throws from Hollobaugh put the Bison back by two and less than a minute later Bucknell took the lead. AU recaptured the lead but the Bucknell scored on the next possession and then went up by four on a three pointer. At the end of the half the Eagles found themselves down 37-32.
Williams led the Eagles with 12 points and three steals. Salem finished with nine points and five rebounds. Barnes and Lipskis each had eight points.
The Bison had three players score in double digits, led by Tomovich, who netted 14 on the night. Kesha Champion had 13 and Hollobaugh finished with 12 in the win.
The Eagles, now 9-14 overall and 4-6 in the Patriot League, will play host to Colgate on Sunday at Bender Arena. Tip off is set for 2 p.m.