Lady Braves drops Army

The Quinnipiac University women’s basketball team went 2-1 for the week, defeating Lehigh and Army, and dropping a heartbreaker to perennial national powerhouse Texas A&M.
The Braves won their second home game Wednesday night at Burt Kahn Court in as many times at home with a convincing 86-56 win over Lehigh. The Braves started the game off by scoring the first 14 points of the game and led in the first half by as many as 18 points, before the Mountain Hawks used a late run to cut the deficit to just seven points for a score of 40-33 at halftime.
Five players scored in double figures for QU, led by sophomore Ashlee Kelly with 21 points and seven rebounds, junior guard Megan Rooney with 16 points, sophomore Sara Esidore with 13 points, sophomore Katie Keilty with 12 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists, and senior Katie Caputi, who came off the bench to score 11 key points, including three 3-pointers in a row.
Lehigh was led by Anne Tierny, who added 22 points and 7 rebounds for the night. Cassidy, the feisty little point guard, who has controlled the tempo of the game for the Braves thus far this season, stated about the game, “We were coming off a tough loss against Fairfield and so we just came out ready to win. Everyone contributed and once we got started they couldn’t stop us.”
After a convincing win over Lehigh, the Braves traveled to Brown University in Providence, R.I. for the Brown Classic. The Braves faced a tough Texas A&M team for the first time in school history, but dropped the contest in the closing seconds of the game, 76-72. Sophomore standout Esidore (Portland, CT) led all scorers with a game-high 21 points, while fellow classmate Ashlee Kelly recorded a double-double with 16 points and grabbed 12 rebounds.
Junior Megan Rooney (Guilford, CT) chipped in 10 points. For the Aggies, junior Kim Moore scored 17 points and pulled down 7 rebounds.
Texas A&M plays a tough schedule in the Big 12 Conference, which is one of the elite women’s conferences in the nation. Indeed, Texas A&M point guard Toccara Williams finished fifth in the nation last year in steals per game with 4, and had 5 steals against Quinnipiac, along with 8 points and 5 assists. Williams also finished ninth in the nation in assists, dishing out 9 per game at the end of the 2001 season. The Lady Braves outshot the Aggie 48.3% to 42.5%, but missed many key foul shots in the closing minutes.
After the tough loss to the Aggies, Quinnipiac came back Sunday afternoon to play a very athletic and physical Army team in the consolation game, who they defeated 61-57. Senior Theresa Sanchez (South Hackensack, NJ) scored the first 6 points for the Braves and finished with 14 points for the day. Also scoring in double figures for the Braves were Caputi with 12 points and Esidore with 10 points. Although QU trailed at the half 33-28, they used an aggressive start to the second half to take the lead for the rest of the game and finish in third place at the Brown Classic.
Texas A&M beat the Brown Bears 75-65 in the championship game. Cassidy had 9 points, 4 assists, and 2 steals. The junior West Chester, PA native stated about the game, “Although we didn’t play as well as we have been playing, we knew we had to get a road win.
Our back were up against the wall, and we showed resiliency to come up with a win.” Indeed, the Braves fought until the last second for a scrappy road win. Christine Gassman led Army with 16 point while teammate Katie Macfarlane had 13 points and grabbed 11 boards.
This week the Braves travel back to Hamden Wed. night, where they are 2-0 within the friendly confines of Burt Kahn Court, as they take on a tough Monmouth Hawks team for their first Northeast Conference game of the season. Then Saturday, December 8th, the Braves take on interstate rival Central Connecticut