January 19, 2005

Holy Cross Travels To Navy

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Jan. 19, 2005

Holy Cross stands at 8-8 overall (3-0 Patriot League) and is putting its three-game winning streak on the line Friday night at Navy (6-10, 2-1 Patriot League). This will be the 30th all-time meeting between the two teams in the 30 seasons of varsity basketball at HC. Holy Cross owns a 25-4 series advantage over Navy, and is 10-3 when playing at Alumni Hall. Last season, the two teams split during the regular season as the Midshipmen defeated the Crusaders, 71-64 at the Hart Center on January 23. Almost exactly one month to the day, however, Holy Cross came back to dominate Navy, 79-60 at Alumni Hall on February 22.

GAMEDAY QUICK FACTS:
Date: Friday, January 21, 2005
Time: 7:00 p.m. EST
Location: Annapolis, Md.
Arena: Alumni Hall
Capacity: 5, 710
Team Records:
Holy Cross 8-8 (3-0 Patriot League)
Navy 6-10 (2-1 Patriot League)

SERIES HISTORY:
Holy Cross, 25-4
Last Meeting: Holy Cross, 79-60 (Last season at Alumni Hall)
Streak: Holy Cross - 1

BROADCAST INFORMATION:
Internet: www.sportsjuice.com; Dick Lutsk, play-by-play commentator

 PROBABLE STARTERS 
G - #10 Sarah Placek, Jr., 5-3, 9.9 ppg, 2.2 rpg
G - #05 Laura Aloisi, Fr., 5-9, 3.5 ppg, 5.1 apg
G - #34 Maggie Fontana, Sr., 5-11, 7.7 ppg, 4.6 rpg
F - #33 Brittany Keil, So., 6-2, 10.0 ppg, 5.8 rpg
C - #00 Lisa Andrews, Sr., 6-3, 11.6 ppg, 4.8 rpg

RESERVES
G - #23 Jessica Conte, Jr., 5-7, 6.5 ppg, 2.4 rpg
G - #11 Caitlin Agostinacchio, Sr., 5-9, 1.8 ppg, 1.3 rpg
G - #15 Shannon Bush, Jr., 5-11, 4.7 ppg, 1.4 rpg
C - #31 Ashley Brennan-McBride, So., 6-5, 1.6 ppg, 0.8 rpg
F - #13 Ashley McLaughlin, Fr., 6-1, 4.8 ppg, 3.2 rpg
F - #52 Kaitlin Foley, So., 6-4, 3.1 ppg, 2.0 rpg

ANDREWS NAMED PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Senior Lisa Andrews (Concord, Mass.) earned her second Player of the Week honor on Monday, after leading the Crusaders to a 2-0 week last week. Andrews poured in a career-high and game-high 25 points on Saturday at Colgate, going 9-for-18 from the floor, and 7-for-8 from the charity stripe. The 6-foot-3 center also pulled down eight rebounds and had two assists and one steal in 26 minutes of action against the Raiders. Andrews also led the Crusaders with a team-high 18 points in a 70-53 win over Bucknell a few days earlier, helping head coach Bill Gibbons win his 400th career game. Andrews was 9-for-13 from the floor vs. the Bison and also had five boards and three blocks in 20 minutes of play. Andrews now has 170 career blocks and ranks third on HC's all-time blocked shots list. In three conference games so far this season, Andrews has averaged 19.7 ppg, good for second-best in the League. The Massachusetts native is also just 100 points away from the 1,000-point plateau. Through 16 games, Andrews leads the team in scoring with an 11.6 ppg clip. The Crusaders have 11 regular season games left.

GIBBONS GETS WIN NO. 401
Just days after earning his milestone 400th career win, Holy Cross head coach Bill Gibbons picked up his 401st win in a thrilling 66-65 victory over Colgate last Saturday. Gibbons is the winningest basketball coach (men's or women's) in the history of Holy Cross . The 20th year coach is also currently ranked 37th among active Division I women's basketball coaches by number of victories. Gibbons captured his 100th, 200th, and 400th career wins on his first try. It took the Worcester, Mass. native two games to notch his 300th win in 2000.

THIS TIME OUT
After losing four straight games heading into Patriot League play, Holy Cross has won three straight and is currently 8-8 (3-0 Patriot League) going into tonight's match-up with Navy. The Crusaders are 3-4 on the road this year and have a 6-6 record when they play at night. HC is also 1-1 when playing on Fridays this season and is 3-2 in January thus far. Navy stands at 6-10 (2-1 Patriot League) and is most recently coming off a 64-54 loss to Brown University on Tuesday, which was the Midshipmen's last non-conference game of the season.

LAST TIME OUT
The Crusaders won their third straight game with a nail-biting 66-65 decision over defending PL Champion Colgate last Saturday at Cotterell Court. The back-and-forth contest favored the Raiders 32-31 at the half, but sophomore Brittany Keil opened the second stanza with the Crusaders first seven points to put HC back in top. The Crusaders weathered a storm of Allison Lipinski three-pointers and narrowly outscored the Raiders 35-33 in the second stanza to hang on for the win. Both teams struggled from the floor, with Holy Cross shooting 37% to Colgate's 36%. Senior center Lisa Andrews led the way for the Purple and White for the second straight game with a career-high and a game-high 25 points. The 6-foot-3 Massachusetts native had 19 points in the second half alone, while also grabbing eight rebounds and making 7-of-8 attempts from the foul line. Keil (Sparta, N.J.) tied her career-high with 17 points, 11 of which also came in the second. Keil and Andrews combined for 30 of the Crusaders' 35 second-half points. Freshman Laura Aloisi (Nashua, N.H.) recorded a game-highs in assists (6) and steals (3). The 5-foot-9 point guard also added four points for the 8-8 Crusaders. Junior Jessica Conte (New Canaan, Conn.) contributed six rebounds and five points, while fellow classmate Sarah Placek (Alexandria, Va.) added five points, five boards, one steal and one assist.

NEXT TIME OUT
The Crusaders will make the short trip to American Univeristy for a 2:00 p.m. game with the Eagles on Sunday, before returning home to host Lafayette on Friday, January 28.

SCOUTING THE MIDSHIPMEN
Navy comes into tonight's game 6-10 (2-1 Patriot League). The Midshipmen are coming off a 64-54 loss to Brown on Tuesday night in their last non-conference game of the season. Senior forward Nikki Curtis led Navy with a 14-point, 11-rebound double-double performance. Junior guard Ashley Pelzek added 13 points and sophomore forward Kate Hobbs chipped in 11. Junior guard Lauren Skrel had a game high seven assists for Navy, which has lost two-straight. The Midshipmen are led by the 6-foot Curtis (Jacksonville, Fla.), who has a team-best 11.9 ppg average. Curtis is also Navy's leading rebounder, pulling down 6.5 boards per game. Six-foot sophomore forward Carly Meyer (Orlando, Fla.) is also putting up double-figures with a 9.8 ppg average. Meyer is also tied for first in blocks with 10 on the season. The 5-foot-seven Skrel (Walnut Creek, Calif.) leads the team in assists with 88, good for a Patriot League-best 5.5 apg average.

HOLY CROSS IN PATRIOT LEAGUE PLAY
Holy Cross is currently 3-0 in conference play after a close 66-65 win over Colgate last Saturday. Twentieth-year head coach Bill Gibbons has compiled a 156-29 record in Patriot League play, including HC's three wins this year. Gibbons also has six Patriot League Coach of the Year awards and has led his teams to 10 regular season titles and nine championship titles.

HC TOPS FROM LONG RANGE
The Crusaders rank first (all games) in 3-point field goal pct. as a team, shooting .372 (87 for 234) from behind the arc. Sophomore Brittany Keil, and junior Jessica Conte (New Canaan, Conn.) currently occupy two of the Top 3 spots in 3-point field goal pct. among Patriot League players. Keil is ranked first in the League, shooting an impressive 50% (19 for 38), followed by the third-place Conte at 39.6%. Junior guard Sarah Placek (Alexandria, Va.) is ranked 6th (36.4%).

ALOISI AMONG NATION'S BEST
Freshman guard Laura Aloisi is ranked 38th in the country in assists per game with 5.2 per outing. The 5-foot-9 Aloisi is also tied for the top spot in the Patriot League (conference games only) with 16 assists through three league games (5.33 apg). Aloisi has 67 assists through 13 games this season, which is second-best among PL players at a 5.15 assists per game clip. Her 11 assist perfomance against UMass on 11/23 and her 10 helpers vs. Providence on 11/19 stand as PL-bests this season.

ANDREWS ON FIRE
With her 25-point performance against Colgate last week, senior center Lisa Andrews is just 100 points away from reaching the 1,000 point plateau. Andrews is currently averaging 11.6 points per game, and with 11 regular season games left, she is on track to reach the 1,000-point mark. Andrews has averaged 19.6 ppg over the past three games, and is ranked second in the League in scoring (league games only).

AGOSTINACCHIO SHOOTING 1.000%
Senior guard Caitlin Agostinacchio is a perfect 5-for-5 from behind the arc so far this season. Agostinacchio has appeared in 14 games and is averaging 6.6 minutes. She has 25 total points thus far, which is more than double her total points from the entire season last year.

FROM THE CHARITY STRIPE
Sophomore Brittany Keil has made 25 of 29 free throw attempts on the season, giving her an impressive 86.2 FT%. Senior center Lisa Andrews is also having a fine season from the line, converting 40 of 49 foul shots, for an 81.6 FT%. The 6-foot-3 center made 7-of-8 foul shots last time out. As a team, the Crusaders rank first among Patriot League schools (all games) with a 73.5% free throw percentage and second among PL schools (conference games only) with a 77% free throw percentage. Through 15 games, Crusader players have made good on 166 of 226 attempts.

BLOCK PARTY
Lisa Andrews is currently ranked second (all games) among Patriot League players and third in the League (conference games only) in blocked shots. The 6-foot-4 center has turned away a team-leading 24 shots so far this season and is averaging 1.5 blocks per game. Andrews finished last season ranked 21st in the country with 2.5 blocks per outing.

BATTLE OF THE BOARDS
The Crusaders are 4-0 when outrebounding their opponents, and only 4-8 when their opponents win the battle of the boards. The Crusaders have outrebounded two of their last three opponents (both wins), after being outrebounded the previous eight games, dating back to November 27.

RECORDS TO WATCH
Senior guard Maggie Fontana is moving up in a number of all-time Holy Cross statistics lists. Fontana recently passed Ann Lambiotte (`91) in scoring and is currently ranked ninth with 1,357 points. She is nine steals away from breaking into the Top 3 (229), and she is just 29 rebounds away from moving into the Top 10 in that category (669). Fontana is also steadily climbing the all-time Patriot League charts in a number of categories. The 5-foot-11 Illinois native is currently ranked 11th in assists (384), 20th in points (1,357) and 21st in rebounds (669). Lisa Andrews is currently ranked 4th in all-time blocked shots (170) and is only four away from taking the third slot.

DOUBLE-DOUBLES
Seniors Lisa Andrews and Maggie Fontana are the only two HC players who have recorded double-doubles this season. Andrews went for 12 points and 10 boards in a 64-56 win at Siena on December 9 and Fontana tallied 10 points and 10 boards in a one-point loss to UAB on November 26.

ALOISI, ANDREWS HONORED
Freshman guard Laura Aloisi earned Patriot League Rookie of the Week honors (Nov. 29) just one week after senior center Lisa Andrews was named PL Player of the Week (Nov. 22). Aloisi was recognized for her performances in the Iona (six assists, three steals), UAB (career-high 14 points), and UMass games (career-high 11 assists). Andrews tallied 19 points, four rebounds, two blocks and a steal vs. Buffalo two days after a 12-point, five rebounds, two steals and a block in the home opener against Providence.

PATRIOT LEAGUE WOMEN'S BASKETBALL ON CSTV
The February 19 game featuring Holy Cross and Colgate, which will be played at the Hart Center in Worcester, Mass., is the only Patriot League regular season women's game slated for CSTV. College Sports Television will also broadcast the March 3 PL Quarterfinals and the March 9 PL Championship game.

HC PICKED TO WIN PATRIOT LEAGUE CROWN
Ten-time Patriot League regular-season champion Holy Cross was picked to win the 2004-2005 Patriot League regular-season title in a pre-season vote of the League's head coaches and sports information directors. The Crusaders tied last season's regular season champion Colgate with five first place votes, but amassed 84 total points, edging the Raiders by two (coaches and SIDs were not allowed to vote for their own team). American finished third with 72 points, followed by Lehigh (68), Bucknell (55), Army (36), Navy (27), and Lafayette (19). In other voting, Colgate senior Emily Braseth and Lehigh senior Jessica DePalo were chosen as the Pre-Season Co-Players of the Year. They are joined on the Pre-Season All-League team by Holy Cross senior guard Maggie Fontana, Bucknell sophomore guard Lindsey Hollobaugh and American senior forward Chanel Hunt. Braseth and DePalo were First Team selections last season, while Fontana and Hunt were second-team picks. Hollobaugh earned Rookie of the Year honors.

2003-2004 HONORS
Joining Fontana on the All-Patriot League Second Team was center Lisa Andrews. Andrews led the League in blocks (69), and was ranked 21st in the country with 2.5 blocks per game. She also finished the season ranked 28th in the country in field goal pct. (.541). Brittany Keil also earned League accolades last season. The 6-foot-2 guard was named to the Patriot League All-Rookie Team after a strong freshman campaign. Keil played in all 28 Crusader games, and started 15. She averaged 4.7 ppg and 3.6 rpg, to go along with 28 steals and 21 blocks.

2004-05 CAPTAINS
Seniors Caitlin Agostinacchio, Lisa Andrews, and Maggie Fontana are the 2004-2005 Holy Cross captains. Agostinacchio, who also plays volleyball for HC, recorded 396 kills this season, giving her 1,063 for her career, which is a school-best. She also tallied 250 digs (908 career). Andrews averaged 14.0 ppg, 4.9 rpg, and 2.5 bpg last season, earning Second Team All-Patriot League honors. Her 2.5 blocks per game was good for 21st nationally. She was also ranked 28th in the nation in field goal percentage (.541). Fontana also earned Second Team All-Patriot League honors last year. She finished last season ranked in the PL Top 10 in seven different categories, and also scored her 1,000th career point against Furman on December 29.