WORCESTER, Mass. – The Holy Cross women's basketball team could not find a way to overcome a double-digit deficit, dropping a 53-39 decision to Navy at the Hart Center. With the final tally, the Crusaders move to a record of 6-13 (2-2 PL) on the season, while the Midshipmen collect a record of 11-7 (4-0 PL). Senior Whitney Fremeau (Manchester, N.H.) led the squad with 12 points and added five rebounds.
Holy Cross and Navy combined for eight total points, four apiece, to begin the first half. Sophomore Amy Lepley (Norfolk, Mass.) and freshman Brisje Malone (Springfield, Mass.) hit jumpers for the Crusaders to start off. Navy broke the 4-4 tie at 12:43, going ahead 6-4 and ending a six minute scoring drought for both teams. Fremeau answered with a lay-up, tying the score as Holy Cross then went on a 5-0 run to take a 9-6 lead at 11:11. Navy followed with a nine-point run, earning a 15-9 advantage with 8:24 on the clock. Back-to-back three point shots by the Midshipmen gave Navy its first double-digit advantage, 21-11 two minutes later. Freshman Alex Smith (Delran, N.J.) and Malone combined for the Crusaders' next five points, as Navy maintained a 23-16 lead with five minutes to go in the front half. Holy Cross rounded out the half on a 3-2 run, remaining down 25-19 heading into the locker room. Malone led the Crusaders with eight points in the first 20 minutes, as the squad shot 28.6 percent from the floor (8 of 28). Navy hit 32.3 percent of its shot attempts (10 of 31).
Navy pulled back ahead by 10 points, 29-19, in the first two minutes of the second half, hitting its fourth three-point shot of the game. Each team added four points, bringing the score to 33-23 at 15:40 as Lepley and Fremeau tallied the two baskets for Holy Cross. Navy stayed in control over the next four minutes of play, holding the Crusaders to one field goal and staying up 35-25. At 9:02, Holy Cross came back within five points of the Midshipmen, 38-33, collecting three-point shots from Lepley and Smith. Navy would dominate the glass and capitalized on Holy Cross turnovers next, pulling back out to a 43-33 lead at 7:02. The Crusaders found themselves down by a 12-point margin, 45-33, at 4:34 but rallied right away as Smith hit her third three-point shot in the game at 4:29. Holy Cross finished slow down the stretch, not making a basket for over three minutes as Navy went ahead 51-36 with just over one minute to go in the game. Fremeau hit a late three-point shot to break the scoring drought, but Holy Cross was forced to foul the rest of the way, falling by the final 53-39 score.
In addition to Fremeau's 12 points, Lepley tallied 10 points and a team-high six rebounds. The Holy Cross bench was not a factor, as no bench player was able to score. In the game, the Crusaders shot 29.4 percent (15-for-51) while the Midshipmen shot 36.4 percent (20-for-55). Navy finished with a 41-31 rebounding edge and was led by senior guard Angela Myers with 14 points and six assists.
On Saturday, Jan. 22, the Holy Cross women's basketball team travels to Washington, D.C. to play against American (13-4, 3-0 PL), for a 2:00 p.m. match-up at the Bender Arena. The contest serves as the program's 1,000th game, dating back to 1974 when the Crusaders started up as a Division III squad.