Mark Seliger Photography
Mark Seliger Photography

Women's Basketball Falls Late to Bucknell

Holy Cross Athletics   01-26-2019
1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Holy Cross 18 18 17 18 71
Bucknell 20 13 24 18 75

LEWISBURG, Pennsylvania – The Holy Cross women’s basketball team battled all game long, but fell to Bucknell, 75-71, on Saturday, January 26.

The Crusaders move to 11-8 and 3-5 in Patriot League play. Bucknell, now with six straight wins, improves to 16-4 overall and a conference-leading 7-1 in league play.

Junior Lauren Manis posted a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds, while junior Megan Swords led all scorers with 17 points along with eight rebounds. Freshman Avery LaBarbera chipped in 15 points, including 10 in the third quarter.

In a back-and-forth first quarter, neither team led by more than three points. The Crusaders went up by three, 12-9, after junior Madalyn Smith sank a pair of free throws with five minutes to go; Bucknell, however, took the 20-18 lead by the end of the quarter off two free throws with one second left.

The Crusaders gave themselves some room in the second quarter, outscoring the Bison 18-13. Holy Cross traded baskets with Bucknell through the first eight minutes; trailing by two with 2:03 to go, sophomore Jenay Faulkner converted on a three-point play to put Holy Cross up 31-30. Junior Kathryn Pedi had the Crusaders’ final five points of the frame with a layup and a 3-pointer to give Holy Cross a six-point lead, but with 12 seconds remaining, Kyi English drained a three to cut the Crusaders’ lead to 36-33 headed into halftime.

To begin the third quarter, Bucknell made an early 5-0 run, prompting a timeout from Holy Cross. Kate Walker made a free throw out of the timeout to put the Bison up three, but the Crusaders pushed back to tie the game with a free throw from Swords and a layup from Manis. Bucknell built its lead to seven points, but LaBarbera notched 10 points in the final 3:32 of the quarter to keep Holy Cross within four points headed into the fourth.

The Bison went up by six early in the fourth, but the Crusaders continued to pressure, taking the lead back, 63-62, with 4:59 to go after a Manis free throw. Though Bucknell responded with a jumper on the other end, Manis had another basket to put Holy Cross back ahead one. LaBarbera had a three to push the Crusaders’ lead to 68-64 with 3:11 left, but Ellie Mack had a three to cut the lead to one.

Swords made a free throw to give the Crusaders a 69-67 lead with 2:34 left, but Ally Johnson sank a three to put Bucknell back on top and Mack followed with a layup to give the Bison a three-point lead. Swords then wrestled down an offensive rebound and made the putback to keep the Crusaders within one with 1:08 on the clock. Bucknell made just two of four ensuing free throw attempts, and despite having possession down 74-71 with 25 seconds to go, the Crusaders could not get a shot up; Bucknell made one more free throw with seven seconds left, and Holy Cross’ final shot attempt fell short.

Kaitlyn Slagus led the Bison with 16 points, while Mack had 15 points and seven rebounds. Johnson had 11 points for Bucknell, and Walker added in 10 points, seven rebounds and five assists.

Holy Cross next heads to Washington, D.C., for a matchup at American University on Wednesday, January 30. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.


  • Manis’s double-double was her 14th of the season; it marked the 18th game this season in which she has scored in double figures.
  • Swords has scored double-digit points in each of her past three games and in seven of her past eight games.
  • Holy Cross made 21 of its 25 free throws, the first time since its season opener against Rider on November 11 that Holy Cross has made 20 or more free throws.
  • Bucknell improves to 55-7 in Patriot League play through the past four seasons.

Season and single-game tickets to see the Crusaders are on sale now. Make sure you don’t miss the opportunity to see the best collegiate basketball in Central Massachusetts! Tickets for Holy Cross basketball can be purchased online at or over the phone by calling 1-844-GOCROSS.

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