Greyhounds Face Canisius In Regular-Season Road Finale

Feb. 23, 2008

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Game Data: Loyola plays its final regular-season road game of the year at 2 p.m. on Sunday, February 24, when it takes on Canisius at the Koessler Athletic Center in Buffalo, N.Y.

Series Notes: Sunday's game will be the 45th meeting all-time in the series, which has been one of the most closely contested in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference throughout its history. Loyola's 55-53 win on December 9, 2007, in Baltimore, tied the series at 22 games a piece for each team. Canisius, however, holds a 12-6 lead in games played on its home campus, including 61-53 and 87-81 victories the last two seasons at the Koessler Athletic Center. Dating back to February 2004, the teams have split the last 10 games evenly.

Career Nights: Three of Loyola's freshmen recorded career-high scoring outputs at Niagara on Friday night. Meredith Tolley (20), Melissa Bangay (7) and Alex Berlin (6) each scored the most in a single game of their young careers.

More On Meredith: Tolley's 20 points led the Greyhounds in scoring, marking the second time she's achieved that feat this season. She also topped the team with six rebounds.

Solid Shooting: Meredith Tolley went 5-of-9 from the field, 3-of-6 from behind the 3-point arc and was 7-of-8 from the free-throw line. She also had two assists and two steals.

Starting Production: Since entering the starting lineup nine games ago, Tolley is second on the team with a 9.6 points per game average. She is shooting .476 from the field in those games and averaging 5.8 rebounds. Prior to those nine contests, Tolley was averaging just 2.9 points and 2.1 rebounds per game while shooting .317 from the field.

Strong Six: Despite playing just six minutes against Niagara, Melissa Bangay scored seven points on 2-of-3 shooting and 3-of-3 from the line. She also had four rebounds, and almost all of her minutes came versus the Purple Eagles' starting five.

Berlin, Too: Alex Berlin saw 13 minutes of action and also recorded a career-best six points. She knocked down 4-of-5 free throws, had a rebound and a steal.

Slow Road Starts: Loyola is now 0-9 when trailing at halftime in road games. The Greyhounds are being outscored 31.9 to 25.5 in the first half of road games. They are shooting just .348 from the field, while their opponents are knocking down almost 43-percent of their first-half shots.

Post Passing: One of the biggest things missing from Loyola's arsenal during Meghan Wood's nine-game absence due to injury was her ability to kick out passes to perimeter players. Despite missing nine contests, Wood is second on the team with 37 assists, and she's distributed five in the last two games, all of them coming on 3-point baskets by the Greyhounds. Fellow post player Vika Sholokhova has gotten into the assist game, too. She has five in the last two games, as well, but her forte is finding teammates cutting to the hoop for lay-ups.

Keep Them Under 20: Niagara's Sarah Wilson was the ninth opponent to score 20 or more points in a game against the Greyhounds this year. With the loss, Loyola dropped to 3-6 in those games.

The Big 5-Oh: Monday's victory at Siena was the 50th of Loyola Head Coach Joe Logan's career. Entering Friday's game, he is 50-35 in two-plus seasons at Loyola.

Quick To 50: Logan reached the 50-win plateau in just 85 games. Only Loyola's all-time wins leader, Pat Coyle (now the head coach of the WNBA's New York Liberty), has reached 50 victories quicker in Loyola's Division I era. Coyle accomplished the feat in 84 games with her 50th win coming in the MAAC Quarterfinals against Siena on March 3, 1994. Prior to the Greyhounds' competition in NCAA Division I, Anne McCloskey (coach from 1976-1981) won her 50 games in her first 80.

Strong Conference: The Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference has its highest conference RPI ranking in recent history. The MAAC has cemented its mid-major status this season with places of 13th on and 14th on Jeff Sagarin's RPI rankings and, out of the nation's 32 Division I conferences (including D-I Independents).

Stepped Up Offense: Loyola's four-game winning streak that came to an end at Niagara could, at least in some part, be attributed to its improved offensive output. The Greyhounds averaged 63.5 points per game in those four, compared to 58.8 for the season. Siobhan Prior leads the way with a 13.0 ppg mark, while Tynisha Davis is averaging 10.3 ppg.

More On The `O': During that streak, Loyola shot 42.9-percent from the field, up from its season average of 38.2-percent. The Greyhounds were also successful from 3-point range, making 36.6-percent of their treys.

Back To Form: Meghan Wood returned to the court against Rider after missing nine games following arthroscopic surgery on her right knee. She scored eight in that game, but she was truly back to form on Monday against Siena. She scored 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting and had six rebounds and two assists.

Running Ways: In many of Loyola's wins, the Greyhounds engineered second-half runs that have paced them to the victories. Here's a look at the details:

OpponentStart ScoreTimeRunEnd ScoreTimeDrexelD, 44-3610:3914-2L, 50-466:20DrexelT, 52-524:2220-10L, 72-62FinalVillanovaV, 40-366:406-0L, 42-403:59VillanovaV, 44-422:037-0L, 49-44:15@ MSML, 37-3612:4012-2L, 49-376:39UMBCUMBC, 50-407:3411-1L, 52-515:23NiagaraT, 36-3612:1615-4L, 51-405:42CanisiusC, 49-474:496-0L, 53-492:50ColumbiaL, 35-3015:5310-2L, 45-3212:26@ RiderL, 30-2417:3313-2L, 43-2611:36@ ManhattanM, 50-497:259-2L, 58-524:08Saint Peter'sL, 33-3020:0025-8L, 58-389:47RiderL, 41-378:599-2L, 50-394:06

Few Field Goals: Loyola won on February 15 at home against Rider despite making just 14 field goals, the fewest the team has made in Joe Logan's three year tenure at the College. The 14 buckets are also the fewest the team has produced since making just 11 (11-of-55) in a 54-25 loss to Delaware on December 14, 2003.

Sixties Preservation Society: Loyola is now 7-3 this season when scoring 60 or more points. Their loss at Iona on January 25 snapped a streak of 20-straight wins by the Greyhounds when they scored 60 or more points, dating back to a 75-73 overtime loss at Towson on November 25, 2006. Including this year, Loyola is 39-10 when they score 60 or more during Joe Logan's two-plus years at the College.

Frosh Floor General: Candice Walker has started all nine games at point guard and played the bulk of the minutes at the position. She is the first freshman to start regularly at point guard since the 1991-1992 season when Coleen Colsher took over the position. Colsher started 21 of 27 games that year and led the Greyhounds with 2.9 assists per game. She started 107 games in her career and finished her career as Loyola's all-time leader in assists with 416, although that record has since been broken (467 by Corey Hewitt, 1995-1999). This season, Walker has been named the MAAC Rookie of the Week four times.

Loyola Head Coach Joe Logan... Is in his third year at Loyola as a head coach... Including four years at Loyola as an undergraduate student (1992-1996) and four years as an assistant coach for the women's basketball team (1997-2001), Logan has been a fixture on the Evergreen campus for 11 years... He has a 50-36 (.581) career record after guiding the Greyhounds to 20-10 and 18-12 records in his first two seasons... He was named the Anaconda Sports Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Coach of the Year in 2006-2007... His teams have made the MAAC Championships Semifinals both years, advancing to the Championship Game in 2006 and the Semifinals in 2007... During his short tenure as head coach, four of Logan's student-athletes have earned All-MAAC honors, and two have been named MAAC Sixth Player of the Year... Logan's teams are 25-11 (.694) in Reitz Arena... Logan is assisted by Marti Whitmore, Alisha Mosley and Erin Brady.

Up Next: The Greyhounds return to Reitz Arena for the final time this season when they host Fairfield on Saturday, March 1, at 2 p.m. Prior to the game, Loyola will honor its three seniors, Tynisha Davis, Vika Sholokhova and Meghan Wood. The game is also part of the NCAA's "Take A Kid To A Game" program. Youth tickets will be free with a paid adult.