Aug 19, 2013
WEST POINT, N.Y. – Reigning Patriot League regular-season champion Army announced its 2013-14 women’s basketball schedule on Monday as the Black Knights look forward to a competitive nonconference slate before the new-look league play begins. Army will play six of its 11 nonconference tilts in the friendly confines of Christl Arena before competition against the renovated 10-team Patriot League tips off on Jan. 2, 2014.
The Black Knights will begin the season on the road for the second straight year as Army will travel to St. Francis (N.Y.) on Nov. 11, looking to avenge last year’s early-season setback to the Terriers at West Point. The Black Knights will then spend the next four games at Christl Arena, beginning with their home opener against Fairleigh Dickinson on Nov. 14. Weber State will travel to the Hudson Valley for the first time in program history on Nov. 17, followed by contests against Manhattan (Nov. 20) and Brown (Nov. 23) to wrap up the homestretch.
Army will spend Black Friday at Stony Brook, reigniting a rivalry with the regional foe which has not been contested since 2000. Following a home game against Morgan State on Dec. 3, the Black Knights will take to the road for the next three games, beginning with back-to-back Ivy League foes Yale (Dec. 7) and Penn (Dec. 11). Army concludes its nonconference road schedule at national powerhouse Ohio State on Dec. 13, facing the Buckeyes for the first time since 2008.
Army will enjoy a two-week break for Term-End Exams (TEEs) and the holidays before wrapping up nonconference play against Staten Island on Dec. 29 at Christl Arena.
With two teams added to the Patriot League during the offseason, the start of conference play was moved up to Jan. 2 as Army will host Lafayette to lift the lid on its title-defending campaign. The Black Knights will then hit the road for conference-newcomer Loyola on Jan. 5, before returning home to face Lehigh on Jan. 8.
Arguably the most difficult part of Army’s conference schedule is next, as the Black Knights spend four of the next five games on the road against teams which finished in the top half of the conference, beginning with the Patriot League Tournament champion Navy on Jan. 11. Tilts at Holy Cross (Jan. 15) and Bucknell (Jan. 18) are followed by a quick stop back at West Point for a Jan. 22 game against last season’s spoiler Colgate, before wrapping up the difficult stretch at American on Jan. 25.
Army caps the busy month of January and the first half of Patriot League play against conference newcomer Boston University on the 29th at Christl Arena. The Terriers have gone to national postseason tournaments five times in the past 10 seasons, including back-to-back WNIT bids in 2012 and 2013, and an NCAA Championship berth in 2003. Army and BU have not faced each other since 1982.
With the exception of the Lafayette road contest moving to the season finale on March 1, the Black Knights will cycle through the second half of Patriot League play in the same order as the first half, beginning with Loyola at West Point on Feb. 1. After traveling to Bethlehem, Pa., on Feb. 5 to face the Mountain Hawks, Army will look to maintain its hold of the Star Trophy when the Midshipmen come to West Point on Feb. 8. The Navy tilt marks the first of three-straight home games as the Crusaders (Feb. 12) and Bison (Feb. 15) follow the Mids.
Army will hit the road for three of its final four regular-season games, starting with a trip to Hamilton, N.Y., to face the Raiders on Feb. 19. After hosting the Eagles (Feb. 22) on Senior Day, the Black Knights will travel to BU on Feb. 26 before concluding with the Leopards.
The newly expanded Patriot League Tournament will begin on March 4 with the Opening Round, followed by Quarterfinals on March 6, Semifinals on March 10, and the Championship and NCAA bid to be decided on March 15. Higher seeds will serve as the host for all tournament games.
“With the number of Patriot League games increasing to 18, we certainly had to adjust our nonconference schedule, especially with the addition of Loyola which we’ve played out of conference in each of the past five seasons,” said eighth-year head coach Dave Magarity. “We’re really excited to have Loyola and BU added to the conference – the strength of the league was at an all-time high last year and this just adds to it.
“I’ve competed in a 10-team league before and it’s a challenge, especially with the addition of two quality programs,” Magarity continued. “That said, our nonconference schedule is competitive once again in order to prepare us for the Patriot League. Ohio State should be a great challenge – I know our players are really looking forward to it. We’re also excited about rekindling the series with Stony Brook – a great team out of the America East – and we’re anxious to avenge last season’s loss to St. Francis.”
Army went 22-9 a season ago to include sharing the Patriot League regular-season title with Navy and earning its first WNIT bid in program history. The Black Knights, who swept Navy in the regular season for the first time since 2007-08, claimed all four of the Patriot League’s major awards in unprecedented fashion as freshman point guard Kelsey Minato was voted the Player and Rookie of the Year, while Magarity was tabbed Coach of the Year and senior Anna Simmers named Defensive Player of the Year.