Women's Basketball Drops 73-68 Overtime Decision To First Place Navy

Amy Lepley

ANNAPOLIS, Md. Sophomore Amy Lepley's (Norfolk, Mass.) career-high of 22 points could not lift the Holy Cross women's basketball team to a win against Navy at Alumni Hall, as the team fell in overtime 73-68 after being up by as much as 10 points during regulation. With the final decision, the Crusaders move to a record of 9-17 (5-6 PL) on the season, while the Midshipmen collect a record of 15-10 (8-3 PL). Lepley went eight-for-14 from the field and hit all four of her free throw attempts.

Three three-pointers made from three separate Crusaders gave the squad an early 9-7 advantage over the Mids. Navy then took a two point edge, 13-11, at 13:04, holding Holy Cross scoreless since the 15:01 mark. Freshman Kelly Hamner (Manassas, Va.) broke the scoreless streak with two consecutive baskets, giving Holy Cross back a 15-13 edge lead at 11:29. Three lead changes followed as senior Whitney Fremeau (Manchester, N.H.) sank back-to-back baskets, earning the Crusaders a 19-18 edge at 9:16. Neither team would score again until 6:28 when freshman Brisje Malone (Springfield, Mass.) knocked in a lay-up, putting the Crusaders up 21-18. Navy outscored Holy Cross 6-3 next with two three-point shots, knotting the score at 24-24 with 3:33 to go in the front half. The Crusaders rounded out the half on an 8-4 run, taking a 32-28 lead into the halftime break. Holy Cross shot 42.9 percent in the first stanza, sinking 12 baskets in 28 attempts. Navy shot 36.7 percent, knocking down 11 of its 30 attempts. Fremeau led the team with nine points  

Holy Cross started the second half hot as Lepley scored seven straight points, boosting her team to a 41-31 lead. Navy then took advantage of Holy Cross' early fouls, outscoring the Crusaders 9-6 to get within six points, 47-41, at 10:28. Fremeau had an answer to the Navy threat, however, collecting six points in four minutes to keep her team's lead. Lepley then had her own answer for a 4-0 Navy run, sinking three straight baskets and giving the Crusaders its second double-digit lead, 55-45 at 5:58. The Mids could not be counted out, going on an 11-0 run to tie the score at 56-56 with just under three minutes left in the game. Smith followed with a huge three-pointer at 2:40 to put the Crusaders up 59-56. A made jump shot by the Mids made it a one-point game, 59-58, 20 seconds later. Senior Alyssa May (Oradell, N.J.) came up with a crucial offensive rebound with 30 seconds left to play, forcing Navy to foul. Fremeau would hit one of two free throw attempts with 20 seconds in the second half as Holy Cross went up 60-58. With nine seconds left, Navy's Angela Myers hit a long jump shot to tie the score, sending the teams into overtime knotted at 60-60.

Each team scored five points in the first three minutes of the overtime period, with Navy breaking out with  consecutive three-point shots made to take a 68-65 lead with 1:42 to play. Holy Cross was forced to foul with 26 seconds on the clock, allowing Navy to make it a two-possession game, 69-65. After two free throws made by the Mids, Lepley hit a three-pointer with seven seconds to go, making it a 71-68 game. Holy Cross could not complete the comeback attempt, as Navy hit its final free throws, falling by the final score of 73-68.

Adding to Lepley's 22 points was a 19-point effort from Fremeau, who also led the squad with six rebounds. In the game, the Crusaders shot 40.7 percent (24-for-59) while the Mids shot 42.4 percent (25-for-59), including three of five shot attempts made in the overtime. Navy also took the rebounding edge, 42-33 and was led by senior center Cassie Consedine with 23 points and 12 rebounds.

Holy Cross inches closer to the end of the season, hosting American for a Saturday afternoon contest on Feb. 19 at 1:00 p.m. The team's two seniors, Fremeau and May, will be honored prior to tip off.