Crusaders Surge Past Lafayette, 75-61

Amy Lepley

EASTON, Pa. – Junior Amy Lepley (Norfolk, Mass.) scored a team and game-high 21 points, sinking a total of nine field goals, as the Holy Cross women's basketball team posted a 75-61 victory over Patriot League opponent Lafayette at the Kirby Sports Center. With the final, the Crusaders register a season record of 11-8 (2-2 PL) while the Leopards move to 7-12 (1-3 PL). Sophomore Brisje Malone (Springfield, Mass.) followed Lepley with 15 points, scoring seven from the free throw line, and tallied seven rebounds.

Lepley hit three field goals in the first four minutes of game action, giving the Crusaders an early 9-8 edge. Holy Cross pulled out to a 20-12 lead at the 12:10 mark, keeping Lafayette from scoring for over three minutes. Sophomore Alex Smith (Delran, N.J.) hit her second three point shot of the game right before the halfway point, giving the Crusaders a nine-point advantage, 23-12. A three-pointer by freshman Ashley Cooper (Colts Neck, N.J.) and layup from sophomore Christine Ganser (Needham, Mass.) boosted the team to its largest lead in the half, 30-18, with 6:38 to go. Lafayette got as close as four points, 33-29, but a final offensive surge by the Crusaders sent the team into the lockerroom ahead 40-31. The Crusaders shot 48.5 percent (16 of 33) from the floor over the first 20 minutes as Lepley led all scorers with 13 points.

The Crusaders kept up the offensive tempo in the first four minutes of the second, taking a 51-41 lead as Malone paced the squad with four points. A jump shot made by senior Meredith Ward (Westerly, R.I.) at 13:42 put Holy Cross back ahead by 12 points, 59-47. The squad kept its double-digit advantage through the next six minutes as Smith hit a jumper to notch the score at 68-52. The Holy Cross defense did not allow a Leopards field goal from the 10:10 mark and gained a 21-point lead, 73-52, at 3:08. Lafayette scored nine points, while Lepley scored for Holy Cross one final time with just under one minute to play, sealing the Crusaders 75-61 victory.

In the game, Holy Cross shot 46 percent from the floor (29 of 63) while Lafayette shot 37 percent (20 of 54). The Crusaders won the rebounding battle, 40-36, as Lepley led the team with nine rebounds. Freshman Emily Parker (Johnston, Iowa) added 10 points in the contest while Ward dished out a team-best eight assists. Lafayette was led by sophomore center Danielle Fiacco with 11 points and seven rebounds.

Holy Cross hosts Patriot League opponent Bucknell on Saturday, Jan. 21. Tip time is set for 1:00 p.m. at the Hart Center in Worcester, Mass. A postgame autograph session will be held 10 minutes after the final whistle.