Natasha Cloud Big Five Player of the Week, Penn Sweeps Ivy Weekend, Drexel Downs Arch-Rival Delaware, Taylor Holeman Posts A Career-High
LA SALLE – The Explorers were on the road to meet the Dayton Flyers who occupies second place in the Atlantic 10. Dayton played one of their best offensive games of the season to earn a 91 – 49 win. The Flyers jumped out to a 17 – 4 lead. They shot 57.4% from the floor, made 10 three-point baskets, and out rebounded La Salle 49 – 28. The Explorers have lost 9 of their last 13 games dropping to next to last place in the conference. Amy Griffin was a bright spot for La Salle scoring a career-high tying 20 points. The road trip continues for the Explorers who visit Saint Bonaventure on Wednesday, then return home to conclude the regular season against city rival Saint Joseph’s on Sunday.
PENN – The University of Pennsylvania swept the home weekend series against Harvard and Dartmouth to clinch its third consecutive winning season. The Quakers are 16 – 7 overall and are 7 – 2 in the Ivy League. Penn holds sole possession of second place, two games behind league leading and nationally ranked Princeton. The Red and Blue need to win out and hope Princeton stumbles once before the March 10 game at the Palestra to force a tie for the title. Princeton is looking to remain undefeated for the season. The loss to Cornell looms large for the Red and Blue. Penn has won 8 of their last 9 games. The Quakers host Brown and Yale this weekend.
SAINT JOSEPH’S – On Senior Day on Hawk Hill Saint Joseph’s took a 61 – 59 decision over the Richmond Spiders. The Hawks took the lead on a layup by Natasha Cloud, who scored a team-best 17 points, with just under two minutes on the clock. Cloud stole the final Richmond inbounds pass to end the game. The senior guard also added 6 rebounds, 5 on the offensive glass, 2 steals and 5 assists and was named the Big Five Player of the Week. The Hawks are 10 – 16 this season and are 6 – 8 in conference play. Saint Joe’s hosts third-place Duquesne on Wednesday before finishing the regular season at La Salle.
TEMPLE – The Owls traveled to Tampa to meet the Bulls of South Florida who are second in the American behind UConn. The Bulls are getting national recognition getting votes in the polls, and showed why winning 70 – 59. Temple shot 27% compared to nearly 50% by USF. Tough to win against that statistic. The Bulls opened the second half with a 15 – 2 run to move comfortably ahead. Tyonna Williams led Temple with 17 points and Feyonda Fitzgerald added 15. The road trip continues against SMU on Wednesday. The Owls host East Carolina on Saturday.
VILLANOVA – The New York / New Jersey trip ended without a win as the Wildcats lost 64 – 62 on a last second shot against Seton Hall. Villanova lost to St. John’s two days earlier. Taylor Holeman scored a career-high 25 points and added 10 rebounds in the loss. Holeman tied the game with a jumper with 19 seconds to play. Daisha Simmons won it for the Pirates converting a layup with 4.5 seconds on the clock. Caroline Coyer’s last second shot was off the mark for the Wildcats. Seton Hall remains in second place in the Big East. Villanova is tied for third with Butler and St. John’s with each team posting a 10 – 6 conference mark. The Wildcats. 16 – 12 overall, have two home games to end the regular season schedule. Villanova meets Providence on Wednesday and closes out the campaign against Creighton before moving on to the Big East Tournament.
DREXEL – The Dragons withstood a late charge from arch-rival Delaware to earn a 67 – 64 win at The Bob. Drexel led by as many as 12 points in the second half. Sarah Curran had 21 points to lead Drexel while Jackie Schluth and Alexis Smith added 16 points. Schluth was named the CAA Co-Player of the Week. The Dragons used the three-ball to their advantage making 9 of 17 while the Blue Hens made 4 of 12. Drexel had a 16 – 6 edge in Points Off Turnovers. The regular season concludes with the Dragons hosting Elon on Friday and Towson on Sunday. Drexel is 17 – 9 overall and is 11 – 4 in the CAA good enough foe second place, one game ahead of Hofstra. James Madison sits atop the conference.