NEC Rivalry Week Continues Saturday at Quinnipiac
Feb. 5, 2010
Sacred Heart Pioneers (17-5, 10-1 NEC) vs. Quinnipiac Bobcats (9-13, 4-7 NEC)
Game #23 - Saturday, February 6, 2010 - 12:00 pm - Hamden, Conn. - TD Bank Sports Center (3,570)
Radio: www.SacredHeartPioneers.com Multimedia: Live Stats
The Storyline... Northeast Conference Rivalry Week continues on Saturday afternoon as Sacred Heart heads to Quinnipiac for the return match-up between the in-state rivals. The Pioneers extended their streak to 10-straight at home over the Bobcats with a 51-34 win on Thursday night in the Pitt Center. SHU is looking for their third five-game winning streak this season with a win at Quinnipiac. The Pioneers can also post their 18th win of the year on Saturday, a mark that would extend their streak to nine-straight seasons with 18 or more victories, the longest active streak in the league. QU is hoping to end a season-long six-game losing skid as they sit tied for ninth in the NEC standings at 4-7.
Series... Sacred Heart leads the all-time series, 31-23, and has won 12 of the last 15 meetings. SHU is 16-7 against the Bobcats since joining the NEC in 1999-2000. Today’s game marks the 26th time head coaches Ed Swanson and Tricia Fabbri will face each other in the rivalry between the two schools with Swanson holding a 18-7 edge. The Pioneers have won 10-straight against the Bobcats at home in the Pitt Center with Quinnipiac’s last win in Fairfield coming during the 2000-01 season, 72-69 in overtime. The Bobcats have lost 12-straight in the Pitt Center including NEC Tournament losses in 2003 and 2009 The first ever meeting took place during the 1975-76 season, SHU’s second year of competition.
SHU in the Northeast Conference... Sacred Heart is in its 11th season of play in the Northeast Conference and has posted a 148-43 conference record over that span. The Pioneers are coming off their second NEC Championship along with a 21-0 run through the league last season. SHU won their first championship during the 2005-06 season, running off a 26-5 record and 16-2 NEC mark. SHU has never finished lower then tied for third in the final league standings. Head Coach Swanson is the leader in all-time NEC wins at 148 victories. The Coaches... Ed Swanson (SHU ‘89) is in his 20th season as head coach at his alma mater. Swanson posts a 339-226 record in his career at Sacred Heart. His teams have a 213-107 record since joining the Division I ranks in 1999-00. Swanson was inducted in to the New England Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009 and is the program’s longest tenured coach and all-time leader in coaching wins (339). He has been named the NEC Coach of the Year three times and is the all-time leader in regular season NEC wins (148). Tricia Fabbri (Fairfield ‘91) is in her 15th season at the helm of the Quinnipiac University women’s basketball program. Fabbri owns a 204-209 record in her 15 seasons at QU and overall.
Scouting the Bobcats... The Quinnipiac Bobcats have lost six-straight after falling for the 12th-straight time in the Pitt Center on Thursday night. Their 34 point offensive output was their lowest of the season as they have now lost six-straight falling to 4-7 in the NEC. The Bobcats sit tied for ninth place in the standings with Mount St. Mary’s. Junior center Courtney Kaminski leads the team in scoring at 13.9 points per game with 7.7 rebounds per outing. Sophomore Jacinda Dunbar averages 10.0 points and pulls down 8.0 rebounds per game. Kaminski and Dubar are third and fourth in NEC in rebounding. The Bobcats lead the league in field goal defense (.358) and rebounding (42.5).
Last Meeting with Quinnipiac... Sacred Heart freshman Kiley Evans scored 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds while sophomore Callan Taylor recorded her 12th double double with 13 points and 13 boards as the Pioneers posted a 51-34 win over Quinnipiac Thursday night. The 34 points allowed by the Pioneers was the fewest points by an opponent since the 2004-05 season when SHU beat Long Island at home, 65-28 (Feb. 19, 2005). Joining Evans and Taylor in double figures was junior Alisa Apo who finished with 15 points, seven assists and three steals in the win. SHU shot just 38.2% (21-55) but held the Bobcats to 30.0% (12-40) while forcing 16 turnovers they turned into 20 points on the offensive end. Quinnipiac came out and looked to slow the tempo, but the Pioneers showed patience and took control and opened up a 20-9 lead by the 10 minute mark. Apo, Taylor and Evans did all of the damage on an early 15-4 run. SHU’s offense went cold and let the Bobcats hang around, trailing 24-14 at the break. The Pioneers put the game away in the opening minutes of the second half, leaving no doubt with a 17-4 run over the first eight and a half minutes. A three from Apo opened the half and a fast-break lay-up from Evans at 11:37 gave the Pioneers a 41-18 lead. Back-to-back jumpers from the duo again at 9:15 and 8:28 kept the lead at 23 points, 47-24. Quinnipiac made just six-of-21 from the field in the second half and hit just one-of-seven from behind the arc in the loss. Dunbar was the only Bobcat in double digits with 10 points and six rebounds.
Closing in on 18... The Pioneers are one win away from posting their 18th victory of the year. Under head coach Ed Swanson, Sacred Heart has won 18 or more games 10 times as they look to eclipse the mark for the ninth-straight year. SHU is also closing in on their fifth 20-win season in the last seven years and fourth in the last five. The Pioneers are currently riding a streak of nine-straight winning seasons and 14-straight years with a .500 record or better. The last losing season came in 1994-95, an 11-16 finish. xxxxxxxxx