March 21, 2013
Fordham 55, Army 46
BRONX, N.Y. – Army women’s basketball had its season come to a close on Thursday evening as the Black Knights lost at Fordham 55-46 in the first round of the WNIT. Senior Anna Simmers closed out her career with a game-high 15 points while freshman Kelsey Minato notched her first career double-double in what was Army’s first appearance in the WNIT.
There was a sense of déjà vu from the Black Knights’ Patriot League Quarterfinal game as Army (22-9) led by as many as six early in the first half before going cold from the field. Army led 15-9 through the first 12 minutes before missing its next 10 shots and turning the ball over five times before Simmers stopped the bleeding with a layup with 34 seconds remaining.
Fordham (25-8) took a 24-17 lead into the break after Army shot just 26.7 percent (8-30) in the first, making just one three-pointer. Conversely, the Rams shot 40 percent (10-25) and took advantage of their 17 defensive rebounds by running out to nine fast-break points.
Despite Fordham scoring first in the second half, Army responded with a 9-0 run to knot the game at 26-26 with 15:44 remaining as Minato scored four of her 13 points. The score was tied once again, 28-28, before Fordham’s Arielle Collins sank a triple to give the Rams a lead which they would never relinquish.
The contest remained within one possession before Fordham went on a 10-3 run to push its lead to 43-36 with five minutes remaining. The Black Knights got no closer than five the rest of the way as the Rams responded to every Army basket.
Fordham had three players in double figures as Marah Strickland and Abigail Corning added 15 points apiece, while Arielle Collins scored 14. Corning snagged a team-high 11 rebounds.
Army shot 32.8 percent (20-61) for the game to finish the season 4-7 when shooting below 35 percent. Rebounds were dead even at 37-37 as Minato had a career-high 11 boards to also tie for the game high. With 13 points tonight, Minato became Army’s all-time freshman leading scorer with 397 points, edging All-American Lisa Russell (1991-92) by four points.
Simmers ends her decorated career with 883 points to rank 23rd all-time.
Army finishes the season 22-9 for its highest win total since 2006-07 when the Black Knights set their Division I record with 24 victories. The Black Knights’ eight-game turnaround from last season is the second-best in Division I program history.