In the opening round of the Patriot League Tournament, the Boston University women’s basketball team will take on Loyola University-Maryland at 7 p.m. at Case Gymnasium.
For their regular season efforts, the Terriers (12-19, 7-11 Patriot League) earned the No. 7 seed in the tournament while the Greyhounds (5-24, 2-16 Patriot League) finished the season in last place, and were given the No. 10 spot in the playoffs.
“We’re excited to play in our first playoff game,” said BU coach Kelly Greenberg, “We’ve gone through a lot of ups and downs this year, but we’re real excited for Loyola. We feel like we’ve got a real chance to come away with a win.”
The Terriers are coming off a 67-65 win on Senior Day against College of the Holy Cross, where all four seniors scored double-digit points. Senior forward Rashidat Agboola led the way for the BU and the senior class, racking up a game-high 19 points in the win.
Greenberg said the win against the Crusaders (18-11, 10-8 Patriot League) gave the Terriers a much-needed boost before going into the conference playoffs.
“We definitely think that win [against Holy Cross] built a lot of confidence for us,” said Greenberg. “We did a lot of good things on Saturday, and I was really proud of us. We came out, and we got the job done, and I think that will really help us on Tuesday.”
For Loyola, the Greyhounds are coming off a 24-point defeat at the hands of the U.S. Naval Academy. This loss capped off a 10-game losing streak to end the season for Loyola, helping lead to the last-place finish. Like the Terriers, this is Loyola’s first year in the Patriot League, and the transition has not been an easy one. The last time the Greyhounds won a game was on Jan. 25 when the team defeated Colgate University 61-54 on the road in Hamilton, N.Y.
The Greyhounds have not been able to win a contest in over a month, but Greenberg said the Terriers are not underestimating their opponent, knowing a team like Loyola is desperate to get a win. “When a team hasn’t won in a while, you never want to be that team that they get a win against,” Greenberg said. “But we don’t like to worry about other teams records. We just have to come out, get some easy layups and play our game. We know we can’t look past them, and we understand that.”
When the two teams faced off this season, the Terriers had the edge, taking the season series two games to none. The Terriers started the first game on a 9-0 run and never relinquished the lead, winning the contest by a score of 70-60 in Baltimore.
Sophomore guard Clodagh Scannell registered a game-high 17 points for the Terriers, as she hit five 3-pointers. Agboola also registered her second double-double of the year, scoring 13 points and grabbing 13 rebounds.
In their contest in Boston, the Terriers cruised to a 74-55 win, marking their second-biggest margin of victory of the season. The Greyhounds scored the first bucket, but BU responded with an 11-0 run to grab an early command of the game. The Terriers found themselves up by 20 points at halftime, leading to a comfortable win.
Senior guard Danielle Callahan scored 20 points, including six 3-pointers, to lead the way for BU while Agboola once again dominated, recording 19 points and five rebounds.
Junior and leading scorer for the Greyhounds Nai Brown chipped in 14 points in the second loss. Brown has been one of the few bright spots on the team this season, averaging 14.6 points per game for the five-win Greyhounds. The rest of team has not had much success on the offensive end, as there is only one other player averaging double-digit points. As a whole, Loyola has scored 53.9 points per contest, holding the last in Patriot League.
With the No. 2 seed U.S. Military Academy looming, the road will not get easier for the winner of this game. Greenberg said the team in not looking at the potential matchup, but has all its focus on Tuesday night.
“We want to take it just one game at a time,” Greenberg said. “We just have to take care of business tomorrow: get some easy baskets, play some defense. Then, we’ll see what happens.”