Dec. 4, 2002
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Siena brings a record of 2-2 into tonight's MAAC opener against Fairfield. Siena has dominated the MAAC over the last two years compiling a conference mark of 34-2. The Saints bested Fairfield three times last season, culminating with an 80-62 triumph in the MAAC tournament semifinals.
The Saints return to action for the first time since November 24th's 66-40 set back to nationally ranked Boston College. The green and gold found themselves trailing 39-8 at intermission before rebounding to outscore the Eagles during the second half 32-27. Both of Siena's losses have come at the hands of ranked teams (#14 Penn State, #20 Boston College).
Siena travels to Lawrenceville, New Jersey for Sunday's league game with Rider. The Saints swept the Broncos last season, winning by scores of 79-56 and 69-63.
ON THE AIR
Saints Women's Basketball can be heard on 88.3 WVCR-FM. Fans can also tune in on the internet at the Siena Athletics homepage, www.sienasaints.com. The pregame show begins 15 minutes before scheduled tipoff. Eric Kopf will be handling the play-by-play throughout the season.
SIENA HEAD COACH GINA CASTELLI
Career Record: 202-137 .597 (13th year) At Siena: Same
Gina Castelli is in her 13th season at the helm of the Siena College women's basketball program. She is the winningest coach in school history, and she has led the Saints to six 20-win seasons in her 12 years. She won the 200th game of her career in the 2002 season finale against Marist. For her efforts Castelli was named Co-MAAC Coach of the Year. She has now won or shared the award six times during her 12 seasons. Prior to coming to Siena, Castelli was a standout performer on the court with Canisius College in Buffalo, N.Y. She still ranks among the school's top three in points, assists and steals, and she was inducted into the Golden Griffins Hall of Fame in October of 1997. She was also an academic All-American while at Canisius and she earned her bachelor's degree in 1986.
SCOUTING THE FAIRFIELD UNIVERSITY STAGS
Fairfield enters today's match up 1-3 overall, suffering a season-opening loss to Penn State, 90-56, before rebounding back to defeat Delaware State 70-59. The Stags have dropped their past two games, falling to Hofstra and Northeastern, 89-70 and 63-73, respectively. Senior Isidora Schrene leads the team in points per game (21.5) and has recorded 4.0 rebounds per game, despite only playing in two of Fairfield's four contests. Sophomore Cathy Dash lists second on the team in points with 14.5, matching that of Siena's Liene Jansone's current average, and leads the team in rebounds per game with 7.8 -- good enough for fourth in the league. Head Coach Dianne Nolan entered the 2002-03 campaign with a 457-330 overall record, and is now just three wins shy of 400 at Fairfield (397-273). In 24 years at the helm she has led the Stags to three Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Tournament championships, three MAAC regular season titles, four appearances in the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament, a post-season WNIT appearance and has recieved a New England Coach of the Year selection in addition to five MAAC Coach of the Year awards.