The Albany Women’s Basketball Cup will be played for the 24th time


ALBANY — The University of Albany and Siena women’s basketball teams have played each other numerous times in casual matchups over the summer.

When the Great Danes (1-0) and Saints (1-0) meet at 1 p.m. Sunday at MVP Arena for the annual Albany Cup game, the stakes are much higher.

“Now it’s the real game, so it’s even more exciting,” said UAlbany fifth-year guard Ellen Hahne.

Last season, UAlbany handed Siena a 64-44 defeat at SEFCU Arena, the worst loss the then-winless Saints have suffered at this stage of the season, and claimed the trophy for the first time since 2017.

When: 1 p.m. Sunday

Where: UHY Center, Loudonville

Flow: ESPN+; Radio: 88.3 The Holy

So, were there any snaps of words when they met in the offseason?

“There are a few, but not too many. We’re all very friendly with each other and were looking forward to the game,” said University of Albany sophomore guard and Cambridge graduate Lilly Phillips. “It was really, really competitive, just one-on-one with them.”

“It was fun. We compete and just have fun,” said Siena junior guard Ahniysha Jackson, an Albany High graduate.

Siena opened its season with a 78-58 victory over the University of New Hampshire, which UALbany staff watched live. The 20-point win was Siena’s biggest in a home opener since 2000.

“They came out so aggressive and pushy and were really trying to turn people around. (Coach Jim Jabir) really convinced his young team in a really frenetic style. Really impressed with some of his international freshmen and then the veterans feed off of that and they play really loose,” University of Albany coach Colleen Mullen said.

The Saints have nine freshmen this year, including three internationals. First-year guard Elisa Mevius of Germany had 16 points against New Hampshire to lead Siena in scoring. Fellow freshman Angel Jones had 14, followed by Jackson with 13. The Saints forced 23 turnovers.

UAlbany also opened its season with a win, 67-53, over Merrimack. The Great Danes were missing senior hitter Helene Haegerstrand, junior guard Kayla Cooper, redshirt junior guard Morgan Haney and fifth-year hitter Lucia Decortes, but got 24 points from Hahne, 17 from second-year guard Freja Werth and 13 from Phillips.

“They have a good size. They are veterans. All of their guys know their roles and so they have this cohesion that we’re always trying to figure out. It will be a challenge for us,” said Jabir, who is in his second season of his second stint with Siena. “I just hope we can show up and if we stick to our principles, if we do the things we’re supposed to do, then I think it’s going to be a good game and that’s what I want.”

Sunday’s meeting will be the 24th between UAlbany and Siena.

“It’s going to mean a lot to me,” Jackson said of the match. “If we play together and do what we have to do, apply our principles and focus on ourselves, then everything will be fine.”

When Mullen arrived at UAlbany in 2018, continuing the rivalry was a priority.

“When I took the job here, I spoke to coach Ali Jaques and said we absolutely had to continue this tradition,” Mullen said. “Coming from Army West Point where we played Navy, there’s so much excitement to have a rivalry. It’s like college sports at their best.

The impact of the Albany Cup can go beyond the field, Mullen continued.

“One of the goals of Jim and I is really for young people and the community to be able to come out and see wonderful role models for young boys and girls to look up to, strong women who are successful, who do well in the classroom,” she says. .

Albany Cup

Albany to Siena

1 p.m. Sunday, November 13, 2022

Siena’s Anajah Brown, center, comes under pressure from UAlbany players Grace Heeps, left, and Kayla Cooper during their game on Sunday, Dec. 12, 2021, in Albany, NY

Paul Buckowski/Times Union

A way: UHY Center, Loudonville

Series history: 10-7

Last meeting: UAlbany dominated then winless Siena 64-44 on December 12, 2021, winning the Albany Cup for the first time since 2017.

Recordings: Albany 1-0; Siena 1-0

Flow: ESPN+

Radio: 88.3 The Saint


Comments are closed.