Mark Seliger Photography
Mark Seliger Photography

Women's Basketball Holds Off Navy for 3rd Straight Win

Holy Cross Athletics   02-13-2019
1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Navy 13 14 8 9 44
Holy Cross 14 13 12 8 47

WORCESTER, Mass. – The Holy Cross women’s basketball team won its third straight contest in a tight battle with Navy, emerging with a 47-44 victory in Patriot League action on Wednesday, February 13. In a contest that featured nine ties and seven lead changes, the Crusaders held Navy to just 17 second-half points to hold the final edge.

Junior Lauren Manis had a double-double of 13 points and 14 rebounds to lead Holy Cross. Freshman Oluchi Ezemma had eight points and eight rebounds off the bench, while junior Megan Swords had nine points and two steals. Junior Madalyn Smith had eight points and three assists.

Holy Cross improves to 14-9 overall with a 6-6 record in conference play. Navy falls to 9-13 overall and 4-8 in the Patriot League.

Though Holy Cross appeared to be building a bit of a lead late in the first, leading 14-10 with 1:31 to go, rookie Jennifer Coleman brought Navy back within one after hitting a half-court buzzer-beater. With the game tied at 22-22 with 4:42 to go, the Crusaders built their lead to five points after a layup from Swords, a layup from Ezemma and a free throw from Swords; Navy had the final five points of the half, though, including a three from Kolbi Green with 29 seconds to go, to knot the game at 27-27.

Smith hit a 3-pointer to begin the third; after more than three scoreless minutes, Manis hit a layup to put the Crusaders up 32-27. Navy rattled off a 6-0 run to go up by one, but Holy Cross hit seven straight points to go up by six, their largest lead of the game. Sophie Gatzounas then hit a layup with 18 seconds left to cut within four, 39-35, with one quarter remaining.

Navy did not let Holy Cross score a basket for the first 4:56 of the fourth quarter and tied the contest at 39-39. Freshman Avery LaBarbera stepped back for a three with 5:04 left in the game to break the scoring drought, and Holy Cross was able to build its lead to four, 46-42, after LaBarbera hit another clutch basket with 1:27 to go. Laurel Jaunich brought Navy within two with 52 seconds left before Manis hit a free throw to put the Crusaders back up 47-44; though the Midshipmen had the ball with four seconds remaining, they could not hit a three as time expired to force overtime.

Coleman led Navy with 14 points and 16 rebounds. Morgan Taylor added in seven points and five rebounds.

The Crusaders next hit the road in Turnpike Trophy action at Boston University on Saturday, February 16. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m.

BEYOND THE BOX SCORE:

  • The Crusaders improve to 10-2 at the Hart Center this season.
  • Manis has now posted 17 double-doubles this year, which is tied for fourth-most in a single season in program history.
  • Holy Cross surpasses its win total from 2017-18 and now has its most wins in a season since the 2014-15 season, when the Crusaders went 15-17.

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 GoHolyCross.com/tickets or over the phone by calling 1-844-GOCROSS.


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