WORCESTER, Mass. – Army senior guard Anna Simmers tallied a game-best 21 points and five steals to help lead the Black Knights to a 62-35 victory over the Holy Cross women's basketball team at the Hart Center on Wednesday evening. With the win, Army improves to 21-7 overall and 10-3 in the conference, while the Crusaders slip to 15-13 on the season and 7-6 in the conference.
The Black Knights jumped out to the 7-2 lead just three minutes into the contest. However, the Crusaders answered with 17-4 surge to grab the 19-11 advantage with 9:10 on the clock. Holy Cross junior guard Alex Smith (Delran, N.J.) scored an astounding 14 points during the rally including four from behind the arc to give the Crusaders their largest lead of the contest. Army countered the Holy Cross spurt with a 12-0 run over the next five minutes, as it would go on top, 23-19, with 4:21 left in the first half. The Crusaders tied the score twice and held the lead once over the final minutes of the half, but Army would go into the locker room ahead, 27-25.
Holy Cross kept the game close over the first 3:21 of action, as Army led 32-29. However, the Black Knights exploded with nine straight points to go ahead by 12 (41-29) with 12:03 on the clock. The Crusaders brought the deficit to 10 points (42-32) at the 9:29 mark, but Army began to put the game away with a 9-1 run to lead, 51-33, with 5:21 left in the second half. Holy Cross' lack of offense over the final five minutes, coupled with Army's success rate from downtown, allowed the Black Knights to end the contest on an 11-2 run to claim the 62-35 victory. The Crusaders committed a season-high 31 turnovers compared to Army' total of eight.
Smith led the Crusaders with a team-high 16 points to go along with four rebounds and three assists. Holy Cross freshman center Molly Hourigan (Memphis, N.Y.) scored five points and grabbed four rebounds, while first-year forward Raquel Scott (Ridgewood, N.J.) scored three and hauled in five boards. In addition to Simmers for Army, freshman guard Kelsey Minato scored 12 points and dished out five assists.
The Crusaders shot 36.4 percent from the field (12-of-33), while the Black Knights connected on 24 of their 59 shots (40.7 percent). Holy Cross shot 5 of 6 in the first half from downtown, but finished the contest with a 5-of-10 clip (50.0 percent). Army shot 40 percent from behind the arc (8 of 20).
Army held advantages in assists (16-8), steals (12-1), points off turnovers (26-6) and points in the paint (18-12). The Crusaders held the 32-25 edge in rebounds.
Holy Cross will conclude the regular season on Saturday, March 2, when it travels to Hamilton, N.Y. to take on Colgate for a 4:00 p.m. tipoff.