Women’s Basketball Triumphant in First Game of MAAC Championships
The Fairfield University women’s basketball team topped Niagara University in the first round of the MAAC Championships on March 7 with a score of 74-69. With this win, the Stags advance to face top-seeded Quinnipiac University.
Fairfield started the game with intensity as they scored 27 points in the first quarter, which is a season-high for any quarter. At the end of the first quarter, they led by a significant margin: 27-14. Senior Casey Foley led the charge as she converted her first three shots, which were three-pointers to complement her four assists.
In the second quarter, the Stags continued to dominate and control the tempo of the game. The Stags recorded 17 more points while Niagara added 19 points. At half time, Fairfield led 44-33. In sum for the second half, Khadidiatou Dijou ‘19 led the team with six rebounds and three field goals. Additionally, Katie Armstrong ‘18 and Lou Lopez-Senechal ‘22 each scored five field goals.
The second half was pivotal for Niagara, but Fairfield remained calm to secure the win. By the end of the third quarter, Niagara closed the deficit to two points. In the fourth quarter, Niagara found the lead at 62-61. However, this seemed to light a flame for the Stags, as they responded with a seven-point run bringing the score to 68-62. In response, Niagara was able to cut the deficit to three points in the final minutes, but this was not enough as Fairfield held on for the victory. Junior Sam Kramer was key in preserving this lead as she converted six foul shots during this period. The final score was 74-69 in favor of Fairfield.
The point leaders of the game were Lopez-Senechal with 20 points followed closely by Foley with 17, and Armstrong with 16.
Fairfield sought to build on their momentum heading into the quarterfinal round of the MAAC Championships as they faced two-time defending champion, Quinnipiac University, on March 8 at 1 P.M.
The top seed proved to be tough competition, when Quinnipiac ended Fairfield’s season when the Stags were crushed 63-48. The Stags trailed behind the Bobcats by as many as 14 points multiple times during the first half.
Foley left her heart on the court, not yet ready to accept the end of her basketball career, and tallied 18 points in attempts to keep her team afloat. Joining her in the double digits was first-year Lopez-Senechal who amassed 11 points in her 39 minutes of play.
Although the season ended too soon for Fairfield, the Stags still completed the year with incredible MAAC recognition. Lopez-Senechal was the ninth Stag to win the MAAC Rookie of the Year award while Senior Khadidiatou Diouf was named to the All-MAAC Third Team.