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UMBC Women's Basketball Travels to SEFCU Arena to Take on Red Hot Albany
BALTIMORE – UMBC women’s basketball heads to Albany on Wednesday, Feb. 6, looking to hand the Great Danes their first conference loss of the season. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. inside SEFCU Arena.
scouting the retrievers (7-15, 3-6 AE): UMBC picked up its first road victory of the season on Wednesday, scoring a season-high 86 points and defeating Maine 86-79 at Alfond Arena. The Retrievers had four players score in double-figures for the second time in the last three contests, including a pair of 20-points efforts from senior guards Brittany Crowell and Raven Harris. Crowell drained five treys and finished with a team-high 22 points, while Harris notched her second 20-point performance of the week with 20 points and a career-high nine assists. Sophomore guard Bria White added 18 points and senior guard Kristin Coles chipped in 11 points off the bench in her first action since Jan. 2.
Crowell and Harris rank second and third, respectively, in the America East in scoring and have combined for five 20-point performances in the last six games. Crowell is pouring in 16.3 points per game during league play, while Harris is adding 15.8 points. Harris is chipping in 3.5 steals per game, ranking ninth in Division I, and 3.7 assists. White is also chipping in double-digit points, averaging 10.4 points per game on the season. Senior forward Kim Browning, who reset her career-high with eight points and 11 rebounds against Maine, is pulling down a team-best 5.2 rebounds per game and is leading the team with 18 blocks.
Head coach Phil Stern is in his 11th season at the helm of the Retrievers' program, after leading the black and gold to their second America East Championship game appearance last season. Following the graduation of 59.5 percent of the conference's highest scoring offense in 2011-12, UMBC (34 votes) was tabbed to finish sixth in the league behind Albany (61), Boston University (56), Hartford (54), New Hampshire (37) and Vermont (37).
scouting the GREAT DANES (18-3, 9-0 AE): Albany, who ranks first in the nation in scoring defense (47.2 points per game), has won its last 10 games and enters Wednesday's contest unbeaten in league play. In their most recent contest, the Great Danes completed the season sweep over Binghamton, with a 69-41 victory. Senior forward Julie Forster scored 10 points, including her 1,000th career point, while senior guard Ebone Henry finished with a game-high 22 points, en route to earning her third America East Player of the Week honor.
UAlbany has three players averaging in double-digit points on the season, piloted by Henry's 14.8 points per game. The senior guard is the league's leading scorer during conference play (17.2 points per game) and became Albany's all-time leading scorer last week. Henry also leads the team in steals and is chipping in 5.5 rebounds per game. Sophomore center Megan Craig is shooting 53 percent from the floor and is avearging 10.4 points and 5.0 rebounds off the bench this season, while senior guard Lindsey Lowrie serves as the Great Danes three-point gunner, chipping in 10.0 points per contest. Forster ranks fourth all-time in rebounding in the America East with 1,062 for her career and is averaging 8.2 boards per contest this season.
Inside the Series: Albany has won fourstraight against the Retrievers to take control of the all-time series, 11-9. The Great Danes defeated UMBC, 69-61, in last season's America East Tournament Championship to punch their first ticket to the NCAA Tournament. In the rematch in the league opener this season, it was all Albany, as the Great Danes put up 87 points, including 25 from last season's tournament MVP Ebone Henry. The Retrievers' lineup on Jan. 2 featured just one starter from the 2012 championship game in Kristin Coles, but Coles - who had played in just two games since returning from injury, played just four minutes in the contest.
On the horizon for the retrievers: UMBC returns home on Feb. 9 in the first game of a UMBC-Vermont doubleheader. The Retrievers host New Hampshire in their Play4Kay game on Feb. 13 before having a bye on Feb. 16.