Nov. 27, 2009
Sacred Heart Pioneers (2-2, 0-0 NEC) vs. Manhattan Jaspers (2-2, 0-0 MAAC)
Game #5 - Saturday, November 28, 2009 - 2:00 pm - Fairfield, Conn. - William H. Pitt Center (2,100)
Radio: WICC 600 am; SacredHeartPioneers.com Multimedia: Gametracker; Video
The Storyline... Sacred Heart welcomes the Manhattan Jaspers to the William H. Pitt Center on Saturday in the first of four match-ups against the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference this season. The Pioneers evened their record at 2-2 with an 83-70 win at Stony Brook Tuesday night. SHU tied a school record with 31 free throws in the win with junior Alisa Apo leading the way making 17-of-22 at the charity stripe. Apo and fellow team captain Maggie Cosgrove combined to score 46 points to lead the Pioneers to the win. The Jaspers are also off to a 2-2 start to their season. Manhattan fell just short on Tuesday night, falling at Columbia 69-66.
Series... Manhattan holds a 1-0 edge in the all-time series. The Jaspers posted a 68-62 win on their home court last season.
Pioneers vs. the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference... Since joining the Northeast Conference in 1999-2000, the Pioneers are 5-4 against teams from the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference. The Pioneers face Manhattan, Fairfield, Saint Peter’s and Siena this season. SHU saw a four-game winning streak against the league snapped in 2007-08 and are now on a three-game slide after losses to Fairfield and Manhattan last season. SHU has faced Fairfield University more than any other team from the MAAC posting a 0-2 record against the Stags as part of the MAAC. Sacred Heart is 2-0 against both Rider and Saint Peter’s. The Pioneers are 1-1 against Iona and 0-1 against Manhattan after last season’s loss.
The Coaches... Ed Swanson (SHU ‘89) is in his 20th season as head coach at his alma mater. Swanson posts a 324-223 record in his career at Sacred Heart. His teams have a 197-102 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 (324). He has been named the NEC Coach of the Year three times and is the all-time leader in regular season NEC wins (138). Joe Olenowski (Saint Leo ‘78) is in his first season on the bench at Manhattan College. Olenowski has the Jasper off to a 2-2 start to the 2009-10 season. He was the head coach at Pace University leading his teams to a 70-28 record in his three seasons. He also had assistant coach stints at Saint Peter’s College and Long Island University.
Scouting the Jaspers... The Manhattan Jaspers are off to a 2-2 start under first year head coach John Olenowski. The Jaspers own two home wins over NEC member St. Francis (NY), 71-34, and Maryland Eastern Shore, 88-58, and have lost twice on the road falling to Virginia, 86-68, and Columbia, 69-66. Manhattan welcomed back nine letterwinners and three starters from last year’s 10-20 team. Lone senior Michelle Pacheco leads the team in scoring through four games with 16.5 points per game to go with 29 assists. Sophomore forward Lindsey Loutsenhizer is averaging 13.0 points per game and leads the team at 6.8 rebounds per game. Sophomore Alyssa Herrington, a MAAC All-Rookie team pick last season, is averaging 12.8 points per game shooting 46.9% from three, hitting 15 of 32 from behind the arc. The Jaspers were picked ninth in the MAAC Preseason Media Poll.
Last Meeting with Manhattan... Sacred Heart fell to 0-5 to start the 2008-09 season, falling at Manhattan, 68-62, on November 30th last season. The Pioneers got 19 points from Alisa Apo but shot just 28.0% (7-25) as a team in the second half en route to the loss. The Jaspers erased a seven-point SHU lead at the half thanks to some sharp shooting from behind the arc, hitting five-of-10 in the second half. Manhattan grabbed the lead back to start the second half thanks to a trio of three’s off the hands of Abby Wentworth and Annie McIntyre, 42-40. The SHU offense went without a field goal over nearly a five minute stretch as the Jaspers pulled in front 49-44 at the 12:04 mark. Kaitlin Sowinski ended the drought at 11:08 and SHU whittled the lead down to one with 6:23 to go. SHU would twice more pull within a point, 59-58 with 2:52 to go but the Jasper’s held the Pioneers at bay. SHU was within 63-62 with 33 seconds left but Manhattan hit five-of-six at the free throw line and a pair of Apo three’s missed their mark in the closing seconds to help seal the win. Forward Callan Taylor added 15 points, four rebounds and four assists to Apo’s 19 point effort. SHU’s Sowinski finished with 16 points and seven rebounds in the loss. The Pioneers shot just 26.7% (4-15) from behind the arc and saw their 19 turnovers lead to 22 Manhattan points. Herrington scored 17 points to lead Manhattan, hitting five-of-10 from behind the arc.
Last Time Out... Juniors Alisa Apo and Maggie Cosgrove combined to score 46 points and fueled a 10-0 Sacred Heart run to open the second half as the Pioneers posted an 83-70 win at Stony Brook Tuesday night. Apo finished the game 17-of-22 at the free throw line on the way to a season-high 28 points. SHU trailed 36-35 at the break before Apo and Cosgrove took over to pace the Pioneers on a game-changing 10-0 run to get the second half underway. The duo combined to score the Pioneers’ first 12 points of the second half and gave Sacred Heart a lead they would never relinquish the rest of the way. Sacred Heart’s Callan Taylor and Kiley Evans also finished with double figures in the win. Taylor went for 12 points with six rebounds and a pair of blocks before fouling out late while Evans recorded her first career double double with 10 points and 11 rebounds to go with three steals. The Pioneers went to the free throw line 43 times in the win, 28 in the second half, hitting 72.1% (31-43) at charity stripe in the win. The Seawolves shot a blistering 50.0% (16-32) in the first half led by Kirsten Jeter who scored 12 of her 18 points in the stanza. Jeter also led the Seawolves on the glass, grabbing 10 boards for a double double. Destiny Jacobs matched Jeter’s 18 point night while Joia Daniels chipped in 12 points in the loss.
Back-to-Back Record Breakers... In back-to-back games, the Pioneers jumped set a pair of offensive school records. Against Harvard, the Pioneers buried 15-of-24 from behind the three-point arc (62.5%), setting a new school record for the three’s in a game. SHU’s 15 three balls breaks the mark of 13 set twice in Pioneer history. SHU hit 13 against Keene State on February 4, 1997 and 13 against Quinnipiac on February 18, 2003. In Tuesday night’s win at Stony Brook, the Pioneers went to the free throw line 43 times, hitting 31 to tie the school record for free throws in a game. The previous mark of 31 was set against UMBC on March 3, 2001.
Cosgrove Off to Hot Start... Junior Maggie Cosgrove is off to the fast start offensively, shooting 48.5% (16-33) from the field while hitting a team-high 11-of-21 three’s (.524). Cosgrove tallied a career-high 21 points against Harvard, hitting six-of-seven from behind the arc. She followed that with an 18-point night to help lead the Pioneers past Stony Brook Tuesday night.
Apo’s Parade to the Charity Stripe... Junior Alisa Apo has been on a steady trip to the free throw line through the first four games this season. Apo has made 43 trips to the line, hitting 32 (.744). Apo hit a career-high 17 free throws in 22 trips in Tuesday’s win at Stony Brook, leading to a season-high 28 points. Apo has struggled from the field, shooting just 31.3% (15-48) from the field and 14.3% (2-14) from behind the arc.