Jan. 29, 2008
GAME DAY QUICK FACTS: Television: WCTR-TV3, Kevin Shea and Amy O'Brien. Holy Cross Radio: Jeremy Lechan play-by-play; www.sportsjuice.com, internet. Holy Cross Student Radio: WCHC 88.1 FM, Worcester. Series Record: Holy Cross leads, 35-3. Last Meeting: Holy Cross 67, Colgate 47 (Feburary 20, 2007; Worcester, Mass.)
PROBABLE HOLY CROSS STARTERS: Pos. No. Name Ht. Cl. PPG RPG F 10 Alyssa May 6-0 Fr. 3.9 3.4 F 14 Briana McFadden 5-10 So. 14.1 3.7 C 13 Ashley McLaughlin 6-1 Sr. 4.3 4.6 G 5 Laura Aloisi 5-9 Sr. 9.3 3.9 G 44 Bethany O'Dell 5-8 So. 10.4 4.1
THE SERIES WITH COLGATE: This will be the 39th meeting between the Crusaders and the Raiders on the hardwood. Holy Cross holds an outstanding 35-3 advantage in the all-time series and a perfect 14-0 record at the Hart Center. Holy Cross is on a current two-game winning streak, taking both games last season, 75-59 (Jan. 24, 2007) on the road and 67-47 (Feb. 20, 2007) at the Hart Center. During the last meeting between the teams, Bethany O'Dell scored 12 points and had a team-high seven rebounds while Briana McFadden had 11 points, two rebounds, one assist and one steal. Gretchen Polinski had 10 points, one rebound, one assist and one steal while Katie Garman chipped in six points, four rebounds and one steal for Colgate.
SERIES QUICK FACTS Overall Holy Cross leads, 35-3 In Worcester Holy Cross, 14-0 At the Hart Center Holy Cross, 14-0 Bill Gibbons vs. American 35-3 Pam Bass vs. Holy Cross 0-2 Current Win Streak Holy Cross, two games
AMERICAN RECAP: Briana McFadden scored a game-high 15 points while Elizabeth Campbell had 13 but it wasn't enough as Michelle Kirk had a game-high 13 points including 10 in the first half to lead American over Holy Cross, 62-46, in Patriot League play. American held onto a seven-point cushion, 16-9, with 11:13 left in the half, holding the Crusaders scoreless for almost four minutes until McFadden hit two shots from the free throw line and a three-pointer to bring Holy Cross within two of the Eagles, 16-14. With 4:01 left in the first half, a layup by Campbell cut American's lead to one point but Kirk rallied a 12-3 run scoring 10 points, putting the Eagles on top 32-22, finishing up the first half. The Crusaders scored first to begin the second half with a layup by Campbell but American regained control of the game, going on a 10-3 run as N'Garsanet and Liz Hayes each chipped in four points a piece. Kathy Gruzynski dished out six points with 8:06 left in the game, bringing the Crusaders within nine (49-40) but Holy Cross wouldn't get any closer the rest of the game, as American pulled away to win by 16. In addition to her 13 points, Campbell finished with seven rebounds, five assists and three blocks while Gruzynski scored 10 points and had three rebounds. Hayes and N'Garsanet scored 12 points each for the Eagles.
CAMPBELL COMES THROUGH: Freshman center Elizabeth Campbell (Louisville, Ky.) continues to lead the Crusader bench during her first season with Holy Cross. Campbell went 6-for-8 (75.0%) from field goal range, chipping in 13 points and leading Holy Cross in rebounds with seven and in assists with five during the Crusaders 62-46 loss to American on January 26. Campbell chipped in six points and three rebounds during the 48-46 victory over Bucknell on January 20. She had a career-high nine rebounds and 33 minutes played during the Crusaders 57-41 loss to Army on January 16. She tied her season-high 14 points and had three rebounds, three assists, three blocks and three steals in 26 minutes played as Holy Cross toppped Dartmouth, 60-52. Against Lafayette on January 12, continues to lead the Crusaders' success off the bench as she scored 11 points, grabbed four rebounds and had two assists and one steal. She led the team in blocks with five and tied for the team high in assists with three. Campbell also grabbed six boards against the Bulldogs. Campbell leads the Crusaders in blocks with 21 in 19 appearances and is averaging 4.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.1 blocks and 0.7 steals per game.
CRUSADERS TAKE ON THE LEAGUE: Currently 3-2 in the Patriot League, sophomore guard Briana McFadden (Wheaton, Md.) and sophomore guard Bethany O'Dell (Lincoln, R.I.) picked up where they left off last year leading the Crusaders against league opponents. Against league opponents, McFadden is averaging 16.0 points, 3.4 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 0.8 steals while O'Dell is third in scoring for the Crusaders with 7.8 points and chipping 4.2 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.0 steals in five contests. Returning to league play this season is senior guard Laura Aloisi (Nashua, N.H.) and junior guard Jessica Pearson (West Chester, Pa.), who both missed league play last year due to injuries. Starting in all five games, Aloisi is averaging 9.4 points, 4.2 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game. Making their debut in the Patriot League are freshman center Elizabeth Campbell (Louisville, Ky.) and freshman guard Alyssa May (Oradell, N.J.), who have both appreaced in all five league games so far this season. Campbell has scored 7.2 points and grabbed 5.4 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.8 blocks per game. Making three starts against the league, May averages 3.0 points, 3.0 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 0.8 steals per start. Junior forward Kathy Gruzynski (Elk Grove, Ill.) has appeared in three Patriot League contests, averaging 4.0 points and 2.0 rebounds per game.
ALOISI NAMED PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Senior guard Laura Aloisi (Nashua, N.H.) has been named the Baden Patriot League Player of the Week, for competition from January 7-13. Aloisi led the Crusaders in their 77-70 overtime victory against Lafayette with a new career-high 22 points. In Saturday's league play opener for the Crusaders, Aloisi led Holy Cross in scoring in both the first half (eight) and second half (10) points while chipping in four in overtime. Aloisi hit a layup with 40 seconds remaining in the game, pushing the Patriot League action into overtime. She shot 47.1% (8-17) from field goal range and 44.0% (4-9) from outside the arc. In addition to her 22 points, Aloisi also recorded a career-high 43 minutes played and chipped in three rebounds, four assists, and three steals. On the season, Aloisi is now averaging 9.3 points, 3.9 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 2.2 steals per game.
SHE'S BAAAAACK: Sophomore guard Bethany O'Dell (Lincoln, R.I.) returns for her second season with the Crusaders. In 18 starts for Holy Cross, she is averaging 10.4 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.4 steals per game. With one minute remaining in th league contest against Bucknell on January 20, O'Dell hit a shot outside the arc to tie the game, 46-46, and hit the final free throw of the Crusaders victory over the Bison. She chipped in eight points, five rebounds, three steals, one assist and one block during the 57-41 loss to Army on January 16. Against Dartmouth, O'Dell had a season-high six assists while scoring 13 points and grabbing three rebounds and one steal. In the Patriot League opener against Lafayette, O'Dell had 14 points, four rebounds, a season-high four steals and three assists. O'Dell scored a season-high 20 points and had six rebounds, two assist and one steal during the Crusadesr 65-56 victory over Rhode Island. This season, O'Dell was named to the Patriot League Preseason All-League Team. Last year, O'Dell was named the Patriot League Rookie of the Year and received Rookie of the Week honors six times. She also was named to the All-Patriot League Second Team and Patriot League All-Rookie Team. During her debut season, O'Dell made 30 starts in 32 games while averaging 11.1 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.0 assists. and 1.2 steals per game. She also led the Patriot League in three-point field goals with 87 on the season.
O.T. SPELLS HISTORY: The Crusadesr' 77-70 overtime victory against Lafayette on January 12 was the first time Holy Cross ever played in overtime against the Leopards. It also marked the sixth time the Crusaders won in overtime against a Patriot League opponent in eight contests.
ALOISI GRABS NEW CAREER-HIGH: Senior guard Laura Aloisi (Nashua, N.H.) recorded a new career-high in rebounds as she grabbed nine boards in the Crusaders' 56-41 loss to St. Peter's on January 2.
MCFADDEN MAKES IT INTO THE BOOKS: Sophomore guard Briana McFadden (Wheaton, Md.) tied the school record for best free throw percentage in a single game against UNC-Asheville on December 29, going 11-for-11 at the free throw line. She also tied the school record for consecutive free throws made in a single game with 11. In 20 starts, McFadden is averaging 14.1 points, 3.7 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 0.8 steals per game.
HITTIN' THE THREES: Senior guard Laura Aloisi, sophomore guard Bethany O'Dell and and sophomore forward Briana McFadden have wasted no time leading the Crusaders from the three-point line in the last two games. Aloisi is currently ranked first in the Patriot League with a 42.7% three-point field goal percentage, followed by McFadden (37.5%) who is ranked third, and O'Dell who is ranked sixth with a 36.2%. O'Dell is ranked fourth in the league with three-pointers made, averaging 1.90 per game. The Crusaders are ranked first for both categories as a team, averging 5.95 three-pointers per game and shooting 35.2% from outside the arc. Against Navy on January 23, Aloisi went 2-for-2 from long range while O'Dell was 2-for-4. McFadden also chipped in one three-pointer for the Crusaders against the Mids. During the Crusaders 62-46 loss to American, McFadden scored nine point from long range (3-for-5). Versus Dartmouth on January 14, McFadden (3-for-5) and O'Dell (3-for-4) each tallied nine points from outside while Aloisi chipped in one three pointer. Against Lafayette, Aloisi converted four of nine attempts from outside the arc while O'Dell went 2-for-2 from three point range. O'Dell made three of four attempts against Yale while McFadde and Aloisi each scored one three pointer. Versus Boston College, Aloisi went five-for-seven from long range while O'Dell chipped in one three-pointer. Against Buffalo, Aloisi made three of her four attempts while O'Dell and McFadden each had two three-pointers against the Bulls. During the Crusaders 65-56 victory over URI, O'Dell hit four of 10 attempts, scoring all four in the first half while McFadden hit three of her six attempts. Against Maine, O'Dell was 5-of-9 from behind the arc while McFadden scored three on five long range attempts as the Crusaders went onto win 79-50.
ALOISI STEALS THE SHOW: With 43 steals on the season, senior guard Laura Aloisi is currently ranked second in the Patriot League, averaging 2.2 steals per game. Aloisi had a team-high four steals during the Crusaders 62-51 victory over Navy on January 23. During a 77-70 overtime victory against Lafayette, Aloisi added three to her season count. In the Crusaders 66-59 win over Yale on January 6, Aloisi led the team in steals, grabbing seven. During the State Farm Classic, Aloisi led Holy Cross in both games, averaging 3.0 per game. Aloisi had a season-high five steals against Quinnipiac on December 1. She recorded four during the Crusaders' 71-57 victory over Buffalo on November 27.
MAY MAKES WAVES: Freshman guard Alyssa May (Oradell, N.J.) continues her success as the Crusaders' rookie starter, making 12 starts in 18 appearances. Agaisnt Bucknell, May tied a team-high six rebounds and had nine points, one assist and one block. During her fi rst Patriot League game at the Hart Center versus Lafayette, May chipped in four rebounds, three points and three assists in a career-high 36 minutes played.On the road against Yale, May had seven points, four rebounds and an assist. Versus St. Peter's on January 2, May had eight points, six rebounds, one block and one steal. Against UNC-Asheville in the consolation game of the State Farm Classic in Gainesville, May scored 11 points including 10 in the second half while recording five rebounds, two blocks and a steal. In 15 appearnces, May is averaging 3.9 points, 3.4 rebounds, 0.9 assists, and 0.7 steals per game.
MCLAUGHLIN ON THE BOARDS: Senior forward Ashley McLaughlin (Andover, Mass.) leads Holy Cross with 4.6 rebounds per game. She chipped in four boards to the 33 Holy Cross tallied against Army on January 16. McLaughlin tied her career-high nine boards as Holy Cross defeated Dartmouth, 60-52. During the Crusaders' 79-60 victory over UNC-Asheville, McLaughlin grabbed seven boards. Against Boston College, McLaughlin led the Crusaders' 25 rebounds against the Eagles with four. During the Crusaders' 71-57 victory over Buffalo, she chipped in six of the team's 38 boards. McLaughlin had a season-high in the Crusaders' season-opener versus Vermont, grabbing eight boards. Overall, Holy Cross is averaging 35.0 boards per game this year.
GIBBONS RECORDS 450TH: Coach Bill Gibbons recorded another milestone during his 23 years as head coach of the women's basketball team at Holy Cross as he earned 450th career victory with a 66-59 win over Yale on January 6. His current overall career record is 454-2225 and had 185-44 in the Patriot League. Last season, Gibbons led his team to its 11th Patriot League tournament title, beating American 56-48, in the championship game. With the win, coach Gibbons led the Crusaders to the NCAA Tournament for the 11th time. Holy Cross fell to Duke in the first round of the NCAAs, 81-44, to end the 2006-2007 season. Currently coach Gibbons ranks second all-time at Holy Cross in victories for all sports. Gibbons has also led the women's basketball team to more victories than any other coach in Holy Cross history during his 22-tenure. He has won 20 or more game in 10 of his last 14 seasons. Gibbons is also ranked 28th on the active NCAA Division I win leaders. He has also been named the Patriot League Coach of the Year six times in his career. This past summer, Coach Gibbons was an assistant coach for Team U.S.A. at the 2007 Pan-American Games, helping the team won the gold medal.
NEXT DESTINATION - PATRIOT LEAGUE: The Crusaders began this season's Patriot League action on January 12, defeating Lafayette, 77-70, in overtime in the league opener. Holy Cross continued league play on January 16, falling to host Army, 57-41. The Crusaders notched their second league win of the season, edging host Bucknell, 48-46, on January 20. Holy Cross wrapped up its three-game road trip with a 62-51 win against Navy on January 23. The Crusaders dropped a 62-46 decision to American on January 26 and will wrap up the two-game home series with Colgate tonight. Holy Cross heads back out on the road for two games, traveling to Lehigh (2/2) and Lafayette (2/9). The Crusaders host Army (2/13), Bucknell (2/16) and Navy (2/20) before hitting the road against American (2/23), and Colgate (2/27). Holy Cross will fi nish it's regular season Patriot League play athome, facing Lehigh on March 3.
LEADER OF THE PACK: Holy Cross has an amazing 11 Patriot League Tournament titles in the league's 17 years of existence. During its 17 seasons in the Patriot League, Holy Cross has finished in first place 11 times. The Crusaders have also had eight players named the Patriot League Player of the Year. This list includes: Mary Helen Walker (90-91), Norinne Powers (91-92, 92-93), Laurie Carson (93-94), Lauren Maney (94-95, 95-96), Kathy Courtney (96-97), Amy O'Brien (97-98, 98-99), Anna Kinne (99-00) and Maggie Fontana (02-03). Holy Cross has also had two players named the Patriot League Rookie of the Year: Maggie Fontana (01-02) and Bethany O'Dell (06-07).
THE BIG TIME: Holy Cross has made 11 NCAA appearances during Coach Gibbons' tenure including nine in the last 13 years. The Crusaders' most recent appearance came last season as they fell to Duke, 81-44, in the first round of the tournament.
TAKING IT TO THE HART: The Crusaders' hold an overall record of 313-88 and a 274-65 Division I record at the Hart Center in Worcester, Mass. Holy Cross lost its first game at the Hart Recreation Center, 66-34, to Williams in 1975. The Crusaders have hosted the 1991 NCAA tourna ment, 13 Patriot League tournaments, two MAAC tournaments, and several invitationals during the 32 seasons played at the Hart Center.
ALOISI AND MCLAUGHLIN NAMED CAPTAINS: Senior guard Laura Aloisi and senior forward Ashley McLaughlin have been selected as the Crusaders' captains for the 2007-2008 season. Both players are three-year letterwinners for the Crusaders, and will take over the leadership role from Brittany Keil, Ashley Brennan-McBride and Kaitlyn Foley who served as the captains during the 2006-2007 season.
CRUSADERS PICKED THIRD IN PRESEASON POLL: In the 2007-2008 Patriot League preseason poll, Holy Cross was picked to finish in third place in voting by the conference's head coaches and sports information directors. The Crusaders received 77 total points in the poll, trailing only first-place Bucknell (92 points) and second-place Army (83 points). Holy Cross received one first-place vote in the poll, with the Bison earning 10 first-place votes and Army tallying four. Following the Crusaders in the poll were American (fourth, 62 points and one first place vote), Lehigh (fifth, 46 points), Lafayette (sixth, 33 points), Navy (sixth, 33 points) and Colgate (eighth, 22 points).
NEXT UP FOR THE LADY `SADERS: Holy Cross returns to the roas as the Crusasders travel to Lehigh on Saturday, February 2 with tipoff scheduled at 1:00 p.m. Holy Cross is 34-6 against the Mountain Hawks including a 13-4 record on the road against Lehigh. The last meeting between the teams ended in Holy Cross taking a 65-62 overtime victory over the Mountain Hawks in the Patriot League semifinals on March 4, 2007.