Bears Fall to American University in Hawk Holiday Classic Championship

West Long Branch, NJ- Sophomore Sheila Dixon netted 15 points to lead the Brown University women's basketball team in scoring today, but it wasn't enough to claim the Hawk Holiday Classic Championship at Monmouth this afternoon as they were defeated by American, 56-47.  The loss dropped Brown to 4-8 overall, while American improved to 9-4. 

Coming off a solid win against Monmouth just a day earlier, the Bears were follow up with a strong performance today and gained an immediate lead over the Eagles.  A three pointer by Dixon put the Bears ahead 13-11 with just 4:56 remaining in the first stanza, but American's leading scorer, Liz Leer, evened the score with a jump shot. 
 

Brown extended its lead to four points after layups by both Dixon and junior captain Hannah Passafuime, but American cut it to one with just over a minute remaining on the clock.  Junior captain Aileen Daniels knocked in a layup in the final second of the first half to give Bruno a three-point edge heading into the locker room at the intermission.

But Brown lost momentum in the second as American was able to take the lead just two minutes into the second half, and gained a nine-point advantage after a 13-4 run at the 13:23 mark.   The Bears chipped away at their deficit with three pointer by Lindsay Nickel, and Lauren Clarke added two free throws and a trey of her own to put the Bears within three with 11:28 remaining in the game.

Both squads traded buckets over the next few minutes, but the Bears were able to make a stop on defense and cut its deficit to one after freshman Maggie Smith put in a layup.  American's Ebony Edwards sank two free throws and Leer knocked in a layup to extend the Eagles lead back up to five with 6:24 remaining.  Brown came within two after a jump shot by Daniels at the 1:51 mark, but that was as close as the Bears would come as they extended its lead to nine after Brown was forced to foul. 

Leer led the American offense with a game-high 20 points and pulled down seven boards for the Eagles, while Ebony Edwards chipped in with 13 points and six rebounds.  Dixon led the Bears attack with 15 points and handed out three assists, and Passafuime pulled down a game-high nine rebounds.

The Bears are back in action this Sunday at 2:00 p.m. when the squad hosts Buffalo at the Pizzitola Sports Center.