The Fairfield women’s basketball team improved their record to a perfect 2-0 after cruising past the George Mason Pioneers 54-37.
The 489 fans who swarmed Alumni Hall witnessed a performance that became a sight to see.
Stags sophomore guard Katelyn Linney scored a career high 30 points and tied the school single game record with 7 three pointers.
The crowd grew louder as each straight shot caressed the bottom of the net.
It was the first time a women’s basketball player tallied more than 30 points in a game since Stephanie Geehan recorded 33 against the same Pioneers.
Fourth year coach, Joe Frager said, “She had a phenomenal, phenomenal game. I was impressed the most by her defense.”
The New Jersey native is returning from an impressive rookie campaign where she enjoyed one of the best seasons by a Stags freshmen.
Linney won six MAAC Rookie of the Week Awards averaging 10.2 points per game and swishing 67 three pointers, the third most in a single season in Fairfield history.
“I feel more comfortable this year,” Linney said after the win, “the freshmen nerves are gone and I’ve grown a year.” Frager said that she played a “complete game.”
If the Stags want to prove their preseason ranking to finish fourth wrong, they are going to have to look for Linney and the rest of the Stags to play “complete games.”
Frager said, “We need to execute on offense.”
The head coach admits that the team is still looking for their biggest strength but is impressed by their inside play.
“They have risen to the occasion,” he said. With the graduation of two presences in the paint with Tara Flaherty and Stephanie Geehan, who are both playing professionally overseas, the size of the team was a question mark when the season tipped off.
“Sometimes it will be post players by committee,” Frager said. So far the Stags have “risen to the occasion,” as they have outrebounded their opponents by 13.
Although it is only the second game of the season, the victory against George Mason can be something that the team can build on. “It was a great win for us and for the conference,” Linney said.
During her career game she only missed three shots the entire night.
She went 10-12 from the floor including an astonishing 7-8 from three.
It was the first time that the Stags have beaten the Patriots since 1996.
Linney’s historic night could be compared to the last time a Fairfield team took on George Mason. Last year it was Mike Evanovich who drained a school record for three pointers in a game during the men’s magical comeback.
The women’s team will try to continue what they hope could turn into a great season as they finish up their four game home stand this week.
The Stags will take on Cornell and the University of Rhode Island at Alumni Hall. Last year, Fairfield started the campaign 3-0. Katelyn Linney will try to keep up her hot shooting but all she is trying to do is “looking to go out there and win.”