Photo by Demi Rodriguez/The Campus
For the first time in 13 years on Friday night, CCNY’s Women’s Basketball team did something that seemed near impossible: they beat Baruch 59-56, ending a 31-game losing streak to the Lady Bearcats, sending them home with a stunned look on the players’ faces and irritating shock by their head coach.
Good times indeed, but now comes Brooklyn College, at Brooklyn on Wednesday night, a team of which that will be much tougher than the shorthanded Baruch team they upset last Friday.
Not only did CCNY pull off one of the program’s biggest wins in the last decade, and the biggest win so far under Head Coach Jamie Angeli, they did it coming back from an early, seven-point hole after the first quarter.
Both teams are entering hot as City (9-7, 4-3 CUNYAC) comes in winning three of their last four games, while Brooklyn (12-4, 8-0 CUNYAC) enters Wednesday night winners of five straight, holding onto an undefeated conference record. Not only has Brooklyn won, and won often, they’ve done so in dominating fashion, winning by double digits in four of their last five games during the winning streak. Their closest margin of victory was a six-point, 63-57 win against The College of Staten Island on Jan. 3.
Considering this is another “David vs. Goliath” game for the Lady Beavers – without jinxing them which this column probably already did – they could in fact pull off the upset for the second game in a row.
Both City and Brooklyn are back-to-back in each of the CUNYAC scoring categories – City averages two more points per game over Brooklyn, but the Lady Bulldogs allow about four points per game less than CCNY, Brooklyn is shooting and defending the shot just slightly better than City, however CCNY shoots the three-point ball better than Brooklyn, whose big, only advantage is the fact that they rebound better than City.
For the record, Baruch is right behind both schools in each of those categories, and CCNY pulled off the upset against them, so who’s to say lightning can’t strike twice.
Tiara Brown has continued her dominance since arriving at City last year, averaging 15.8 points per game, eighth in the conference, while Erika Richards has returned from last year’s ACL injury averaging 13 points per game.
CCNY is already on pace for their best finish since the 2013-14 season when the program ended the season with an 10-16 overall record with a 5-11 record in the conference. That was the last season that CCNY finished with a double-digit win total, and the first time they did so since the 2003-04 campaign, where they went 11-14 overall with an 8-5 CUNYAC record.
Although a loss wouldn’t be the end of the world for the Lady Beavers who are looking to finish in the top half of the CUNYAC since the conference broke away from a divisional format after the 2011-12 season, a win against the Lady Bulldogs could cement their place as one of the best women’s basketball teams since those of the early 2000’s – a feat that was near unheard of a year ago.
But it also would signify a sense of redemption. Nobody considered CCNY a threat at all going into the 2015-16 season, especially with the way the team performed, despite being shorthanded for the second half of the year.
It’s been on hell of a turnaround so far. It’s been one hell of a ride. But the ride is far from over for this team.
With that, they’re onto Brooklyn.