BOSTON, Mass. – The Emmanuel College women's basketball team will host Albertus Magnus College in the 2019 Great Northeast Athletic Conference Semifinals on Thursday, February 21 at 7:00 PM on the Andy Yosinoff Court. The Saints bring a 21-5 overall record to the contest after posting a 10-1 mark in the GNAC to earn the No. 2 seed in the GNAC. The Falcons stand at an impressive 23-3 overall and posted a 9-2 mark in the GNAC to secure the No. 3 seed.
SEASON AT A GLANCE:
- The Saints entered the GNAC Tournament ranked first in the GNAC in scoring, averaging 81.9 points per game which also ranks fourth in the nation behind just Westfield State (88.4), Thomas Moore (84.5) and Bowdoin (84.2).
- This year's team currently leads the nation in Assists per game, averaging 20.4 helpers.
- The squad topped the GNAC in shooting percentage (45.6%) which ranks ninth among D-III programs
- EC enters the tourney also leading the GNAC in rebounding margin per game, owning a +9.5 average which is also good for 25th in the country.
- The Falcons bring a high-flying offense into the contest averaging 81.5 points per game, with only the Saints connecting on more field goals on the season among GNAC competitors.
- Defensively, Albertus Magnus led the GNAC averaging 4.8 blocks per game while their 126 total blocks on the year ranks 27th in the nation.
- The only team in the conference to average more rebounds per game than the Saints were the Falcons, averaging 49.5 boards a night which ranks fourth in the country compared to Emmanuel's 47.9 (13th in country).
- Albertus Magnus averaged over 19 personal fouls per game, ranking second-highest in the GNAC and over the season had a player foul out 11 separate times.
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
- Junior guard Yuleska Ramirez-Tejeda (Cambridge, Mass.) is the Saints top offensive and rebounding threat and is currently the only player in the GNAC averaging over 20+ points and 10+ rebounds per game. She enters the semifinal with 17 double-doubles on the year.
- Senior guard Madison McLaughlin (Westerly, R.I.) has been the Saints top shooting threat all season long, connecting on an Emmanuel single-season record of 72 three-pointers which also tops all GNAC shooters and ranks 29th in the nation.
- Junior guard Kayla Weaver (West Haven, Conn.) has been EC's defensive leader all season while also averaging 13.0 points per game. Her lock down defense has helped the Saints hold GNAC opponents to an average of 60.3 ppg as she's recorded a league-high 85 steals.
- Junior guard Shyla Osmond (New Haven, Conn.) ranks fourth in the conference in scoring averaging 21.0 points per game and has posted double-digit point totals in all 23 games she's played in this season.
- Guard Jill Johnson (North Haven, Conn.) has enjoyed a stellar senior campaign averaging 18.0 points per game, joining the Falcons 1,000 point club earlier this year.
- Junior center Rah Rah Thompson (Bridgeport, Conn.) led the GNAC in rebounding at 14.3 rpg which ranks third nationally to go along with 16.2 points and 1.5 blocks per game.
Andy Yosinoff - Emmanuel
In his 42nd campaign with the Saints, Yosinoff is no stranger to the GNAC tournament having led Emmanuel to 15 conference championships over his career. He's compiled an incredible 270-14 (.951) record in regular-season GNAC play and earlier this season, moved atop the NCAA record books for career victories by a Women's Basketball Head Coach at the NCAA's Division III level. On December 30, 2018, Yosinoff tallied his 816th win to move past former Scranton Head Coach Mike Strong as the NCAA's career leader for coaching wins in Division III. His all-time record now stands at 829-280 (.748).
J.R. Fredette – Albertus Magnus
In his seventh season with the Falcons, Fredette has never missed postseason play at Albertus Magnus. Earlier this season, Fredette notched his 100th coaching victory and currently has a record of 105-78 overall (.574) including a 41-11 mark over the past two seasons. The Falcons current 23 win seasons is a new program record under Fredette.
THE LAST TIME WE MET:
During the regular-season, the Saints picked up a thrilling overtime win (86-84) over the Falcons in an instant classic. Emmanuel led by 12 points heading into the final quarter before Osmond took over the game scoring 11 points in the stanza to force an overtime period. Both Thompson and Ramirez-Tejeda finished the game with 33 points apiece.
The Saints have controlled the all-time series with a 26-2 record against the Falcons including 25 consecutive victories dating back to the 1996 season.
Emmanuel is no stranger to the GNAC tournament making its 24th consecutive appearance in the field while the Falcons make their 18th appearance. The Saints own a 57-8 all-time GNAC tournament record with 15 championship wins, but the program has not come out on top since 2013. Albertus is 12-17 all-time and advances to the GNAC semifinal for the second straight season. Emmanuel is 4-1 all-time against Albertus Magnus in postseason play, posting a 73-63 win in the GNAC quarterfinals in 2016 in their last playoff meeting. The lone Albertus playoff win came back in 1995 when the Falcons posted a 74-60 win in the NEWAC Tournament in the year before the GNAC tournament began.
Adult admission is $5.00 and children 12 and under is $2.00. Emmanuel College students, staff and faculty may receive free admission but must present a valid student/college ID at the door.
Thursday's GNAC Semifinal game will be streamed live on the web with the official call of the game from the voice of the Saints, Matt LaPan. To tune into the live action, click on one of the links below:
GNAC TOURNEY SCHEDULE
Tuesday, February 19 - Quarterfinals
Game 1: #8 Johnson & Wales at #1 Saint Joseph's Maine, 99-75, SJM
Game 2: #5 Anna Maria at #4 Suffolk, 68-58, SUF
Game 3: #6 Regis at #3 Albertus Magnus, 82-74, ALB
Game 4: #7 Colby-Sawyer at #2 Emmanuel, 61-39, EMM
Thursday, February 21 - Semifinals
Game 5: #4 Suffolk vs. #1 Saint Joseph's Maine – 5:00 PM
Game 6: #3 Albertus Magnus vs. #2 Emmanuel – 7:00 PM
Saturday, February 23 - Final
Game 7: Highest remaining seed