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Women's Basketball Hosts Navy Wednesday Evening at the RAC
Chrissy Robinson tied her career high with seven rebounds at Bucknell.
BALTIMORE--Coming off a pair of exciting wins, the UMBC women's basketball team (3-2) looks to make it three in a row when in-state rival Navy (6-2) visits the RAC Arena Wednesday evening for a 7 p.m. tip-off.
RETRIEVER UPDATE: UMBC is coming off its second straight win, a 68-63 victory at Bucknell on Sunday. Guards Katie Brooks, Carlee Cassidy and Michelle Kurowski combined to score all 38 of the Retrievers’ first-half points as UMBC led by 13 at intermission. Kurowski, who was named America East Player of the Week on Monday, also scored the Retrievers’ final eight points of the contest as UMBC staved off a furious Bison comeback, and she finished with 29 points, one shy of her career high. She ranks third in the conference in both scoring (19.4 ppg) and rebounding (8.4 rpg). Four Retrievers are averaging double figures in scoring, the most of any team in the league, and UMBC is also the only team with four players ranking among the top 15 scoring leaders. Cassidy ranks fifth all-time in UMBC history with 1,293 points.
MIDSHIPMEN UPDATE: Navy is 6-2 on the season after a decisive 67-33 victory over Western Illinois on Saturday in the UTSA Thanksgiving Classic. Center Cassie Consedine posted her third double-double of the season with 15 points and 10 rebounds. She leads the Mids in both categories, averaging 13.9 ppg and 9.1 rpg on the season, and she ranks among the Patriot League’s top five leaders in both categories, while also leading the conference in 3-point shooting percentage (.444). Navy leads the Patriot League in scoring defense (54.5 ppg allowed), field goal percentage defense (.334) and free throw percentage (.759). The Mids were picked to finish fourth in the eight-team Patriot League preseason poll.
Who’s Up Next: The Retrievers host Delaware on Saturday for their final game at the RAC Arena in the 2009 calendar year before hitting the road for five straight games to end the month. UMBC has not faced the Blue Hens since 1993 and is 3-5 all-time against them.
Inside the Series...
Wednesday's game marks the 25th all-time meeting between UMBC and Navy, and the Mids hold a 14-10 series advantage, but the Retrievers have won four of the last five contests, including two straight. Navy won the first six matchups between the teams before the Retrievers won, 64-55, on Feb. 8, 1986, beginning a stretch when UMBC won four of five from the Mids. The Midshipmen are 4-6 all-time at the RAC Arena. The teams have met every year since 1999, but the series dates to 1978, as Navy is UMBC’s fifth-most-frequent opponent behind Towson (44), Mount St. Mary’s (38), Loyola (33) and Liberty (25).
In last season’s 85-77 win at the RAC on Dec. 3, UMBC guards Carlee Cassidy and Michelle Kurowski combined to score 62 points, becoming the first pair of Retriever teammates ever to each tally 30 points in the same game. Navy center Cassie Consedine posted a double-double with 20 points and 12 rebounds, leading five Mids in double figures.
News and Notes...
For Starters: UMBC opens the season with a 3-2 record for the second year in a row and just the fourth time in 24 seasons at the Division I level. The Retrievers are 2-1 in the sixth game of the season in those years and 8-15 in Game 6 since 1986-87.
Going Up: Senior guard Carlee Cassidy ranks fifth all-time at UMBC with 1,293 career points, just 18 points behind Kori Kindbom (1,311) for fourth place. Cassidy is the second-leading scorer among active players in the America East behind Vermont’s Courtnay Pilypaitis, and she ranks 42nd overall. Cassidy became the 16th Retriever ever to score 1,000 points in her career on Jan. 21, 2009, against Albany, her 77th career game. She is the fourth-fastest Retriever to reach the milestone, as only Tammy McCarthy, Felice Pinkney and Kori Kindbom needed less games to accomplish the feat, and she is also only the third Retriever ever to score her 1,000th point during her junior season, joining McCarthy and Kindbom. Cassidy is on pace to finish her career as UMBC’s second all-time leading scorer behind McCarthy, who scored 2,063 points from 1983-87.
Special K: Sophomore guard Michelle Kurowski was named America East Player of the Week for the secodn time in three weeks on Monday after averaging a team-best 21.5 points and 8.5 rebounds per game in a pair of road wins at Towson and Bucknell. She scored 29 points, one shy of her career high, against the Bison. Kurowski also earned the season’s first weekly award on Nov. 16 after averaging 21.5 ppg, 10.5 rpg and 4.5 apg against Virginia and UMES on opening weekend. She is the first Retriever to earn Player of the Week twice in a season since teammate Carlee Cassidy won the award three times in 2007-08. Kurowski also scored her 500th career point in Sunday’s game against Bucknell, making her just the 10th Retriever to reach the milestone as a sophomore during UMBC’s 24-year Division I history.
Road Warriors: With victories at Towson and Bucknell last week, the Retrievers won back-to-back road games for the first time since defeating Fairleigh Dickinson and Longwood Dec. 2-9, 2006. Last season, despite winning four neutral site games, UMBC won just one road contest, defeating Maine at Alfond Arena.
Back to Back: UMBC has won back-to-back games for the first time since winning three straight from Jan. 17-24, 2009. Prior to Sunday’s win at Bucknell, the Retrievers had followed their last four wins with losses.
Hit the Road, Jack: After hosting Navy and Delaware this week, the Retrievers hit the road for a month, playing six straight games away from the RAC. They return home for the America East opener against Hartford on Jan. 6.
Three For All: Guards Katie Brooks, Carlee Cassidy and Michelle Kurowski combined to score all 38 of UMBC’s first-half points at Bucknell on Sunday as the Retrievers opened a 13-point halftime lead. Kurowski led all scorers with 17 points, while Cassidy had 11 and Brooks added 10. The trio also combined to make six 3-pointers in the period.
Cardiac Kids: After opening the season with three straight games with double-digit margins of victory, the Retrievers played a pair of close ones last week. UMBC fought back from a 10-point first-half deficit to defeat Towson, 74-72, on a last-second layup by senior guard Carlee Cassidy on Tuesday. The score was tied 10 times, including with six seconds left. Then on Sunday at Bucknell, after leading by 13 points at halftime, the Retrievers staved off a furious Bison comeback to hold on for a 68-63 win. Bucknell tied the game at 60 with less than three minutes remaining, but sophomore guard Michelle Kurowski scored UMBC’s final eight points.
Double Your Pleasure: UMBC’s three-game streak with four players scoring in double figures was snapped on Sunday at Bucknell. However, UMBC is the only school in the America East with four players - guards Carlee Cassidy and Michelle Kurowski and forwards Erin Brown and Meghan Colabella - averaging double figures, and all four rank among the league’s top 15 scoring leaders. Five Retrievers reached double figures on Nov. 15 agaisnt UMES for the first time since Nov. 26, 2006, against NJIT. Cassidy has reached double digitis in 57 of 63 games since the start of the 2007-08 season, including 28 of 30 in 2008-09. Kurowski has tallied in double figures in each of the first four games this season.
Helping Hand: Junior point guard Michele Brokans dished out eight assists while committing just one turnover last Tuesday at Towson. She has recorded 14 helpers on the season while committing just five miscues for a 2.8 assist-to-turnover ratio. Brokans has also climbed into UMBC’s all-time top 15 for career assists with 194, whch ranks as the fifth-most among active players in the America East. She is the only underclassman among the conference’s top five.
Raining Three’s: UMBC ranks second in the America East with 7.6 three-pointers made per game, and three Retrievers - senior guard Carlee Cassidy (3rd), junior forward Meghan Colabella (T-7th) and sophomore guard Michelle Kurowski (T-9th) - rank among the league’s top 10 in that category. The Retrievers tied a school record with 14 three’s on Nov. 15 against UMES. The last time UMBC drained 14 triples was Jan. 17, 2004, at Northeastern. Cassidy, Colabella and Kurowski combined to make 12 of the 14 three-pointers, as each nailed four, marking career highs for both Colabella and Kurowski. The Retrievers then made 11 last Tuesday at Towson, including eight in the second half on just 11 attempts. Sophomore forward Erin Brown drained a career-high four against the Tigers.
Cassidy for Three: Senior guard Carlee Cassidy became UMBC’s all-time record holder for career 3-pointers on Feb. 11, 2009, against Vermont, and she now has 191 in her career, which ranks ninth all-time in the America East. In addition, she broke UMBC’s career mark for 3-point attempts at New Hampshire on Feb. 10, and now has 591. Cassidy also set UMBC’s single-season 3-point record at 80 in 2008-09. In addition, Cassidy was one of three players to break the America East record for 3-pointers made in a season last year, along with Boston University’s Kristi Dini (109) and Albany’s Britney McGee (83).
Century Mark: The Retrievers set a school Division I record for points scored against UMES on Nov. 15 with 102 points. The last time a UMBC team tallied at least 100 points was Nov. 29, 1985, in a 108-76 victory at Shippensburg, while an America East team had not scored 100 points in a game since Drexel posted 101 at Vermont on Feb. 8, 2001. The Retrievers also scored a school-record 59 points in the second half, eclipsing the 57 points scored in a period twice, both occurring during the 1985-86 season. In addition, UMBC’s 37-point margin of victory was its largest since defeating Salisbury State, 94-46, on Jan. 12, 1991.
To the Limit: UMBC gave 14th-ranked Virginia all it could handle in the season opener on Nov. 13 in front of a record crowd of 1,604 at the RAC. The game was tied, 34-34, at halftime, and the Retrievers led, 48-47, at the 7:52 mark before the Cavaliers used a 13-0 run to take the lead for good and eventually post a 68-57 victory.
Double-Double Vision: Junior forward Meghan Colabella posted her second straight double-double and the fifth of her career with 15 points and 10 rebounds against UMES on Nov. 15, while sophomore guard Michelle Kurowski notched her second career double-double with 22 points and a career-high 14 boards. It was the first time two Retrievers tallied double-doubles since Sharri Rohde and Amanda Robinson accomplished the feat on Dec. 2, 2006, at Fairleigh Dickinson. The duo has combined for all four UMBC double-doubles this season.
Three’s Company: The Retrievers have made at least one 3-pointer in 136 straight games dating to Feb. 5, 2005. Each of the top seven single-season totals in UMBC history have occurred during head coach Phil Stern’s tenure.
Dishing it Out: UMBC set a new school record for assists in a game with 28 against UMES on Nov. 15. Sophomore guard Michelle Kurowski led the way with a career-high seven helpers, while sophomore guard Katie Brooks dished out six and senior guard Carlee Cassidy added five. In all, nine out of 10 players to see action tallied at least one assist. UMBC is the only team in the America East with more four players ranking among the league’s top 15 in helpers.
Charity Case: Sophomore guard Michelle Kurowski made 11 straight free throws to start the season, and she now ranks second all-time at UMBC with a career .823 free throw percentage. Senior guard Carlee Cassidy ranks third at .794, while her 296 free throws made are the second-highest toal in school history.
Hot Shot: UMBC leads the America East in 3-point field goal percentage (.345) and ranks second in field goal percentage (.416). Three Retrievers (Erin Brown, Meghan Colabella, Michelle Kurowski) rank among the top 11 in the America East in field goal percentage.
Cleaning the Glass: UMBC leads the America East in rebounding (41.4 rpg). Junior forward Meghan Colabella (8.5 rpg) and sophomore guard Michelle Kurowski (8.4 rpg) rank second and third, respectively, in the conference. Kurowski pulled down a career-high 14 rebounds against UMES on Nov. 15, the second-best total in the league so far this season.
Against the Patriot League: UMBC is 21-32 all-time against current Patriot League opponents. Lafayette is the only team agaisnt which the Retrievers have a winning record (2-0). UMBC’s most wins have come against local rivals Navy (10-14) and American (5-7). Navy is UMBC’s second straight Patriot League opponent; the Retrievers defeated Bucknell, 68-63, on Sunday.
High-Water Marks: The Retrievers set a number of America East single-game highs for the 2009-10 campaign in their contest against UMES on Nov. 15, including points (102), field goals (39), field goal percentage (.557), 3-pointers (14), 3-point percentage (.583), rebounds (54) and assists (28).
Bragging Rights: UMBC will take on five of the other eight Division I schools in the state of Maryland this season. The Retrievers will host UMES (Nov. 15) and Navy (Dec. 2) and will travel to Towson (Nov. 24), Coppin State (Dec. 12) and Loyola (Dec. 20). So far UMBC is 2-0 against its in-state rivals after a 102-65 victory over UMES and a 74-72 win over Towson.
Retrievers Picked Sixth: For the third time in the last four years, UMBC was picked to finish sixth in the America East preseason coaches poll. Defending champion Vermont was selected to win the conference, narrowly edging perennial favorite Hartford.
Another Honor for Cassidy: Senior guard Carlee Cassidy, who led the America East in scoring for the second year in a row at 20.4 ppg last season, was selected to the league’s preseason all-conference team. She joins Hartford’s Erica Beverly and Vermont’s Courtnay Pilypaitis as repeat selections, as all three garnered preseason nods in 2008-09, as well.
New York State of Mind: Guards Carlee Cassidy (Syracuse) and Michelle Kurowski (Hicksville), both natives of New York, have provided a stellar one-two punch for the Retrievers the last two years, accounting for 48.5 percent (1,185 of 2,439 points) of UMBC’s total offense since the start of the 2008-09 campaign and ranking as the Retrievers’ top two leading scorers both seasons. Cassidy and Kurowski each scored more than 2,000 points in their prep careers, ranking among the best all-time in the state of New York.
Back in the Mix: The Retrievers return 93.9 percent (1,955 of 2,083 points) of their scoring offense from last season, led by senior guard Carlee Cassidy’s school-record 613 points. UMBC scored more than 2,000 points for just the second time in school history but the first in the Division I era. The Retrievers scored a school-record 2,271 points in 1985-86. In addition, UMBC’s 69.4 points per games were the second-best mark in program history behind the 1985-86 squad’s 78.3 ppg and ranked second in the America East.
Retrievers All-Access: All of the Retrievers’ home games will be video streamed through UMBC’s multimedia website, www.UMBCRetrievers.tv. An All-Access Pass, available for $59.95, gives fans the opportunity to watch not only all the live coverage of various UMBC home athletic events, but also premium content not available to view without the All-Access Pass. The premium content includes any and all UMBC player and coaches interviews, highlights and an in-depth archive section of all video available on UMBCRetrievers.TV. Single-game subscriptions for all live events will be available throughout the season for $4.95.
Follow the Retrievers: UMBC fans can now keep up with their favorite teams in a number of new ways, as UMBC Athletics is now on social networking sites Facebook and Twitter. Fans can also follow head coach Phil Stern on Twitter, as well as in his new blog, PHILosophy, while the Retrievers also have the UMBC Dawg Blog.