Courtesy: Erik Schelkun/Atlantic 10

Fordham Wins 2019 Atlantic 10 Women's Basketball Championship

By Atlantic 10 Conference

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PITTSBURGH – Fordham’s defense-first mindset and overall confidence led to its second-ever Atlantic 10 women’s basketball title, as the Rams defeated top-seeded VCU 62-47 Sunday at the A.J. Palumbo Center.

Fordham has now secured the Atlantic 10’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament and will make its first appearance since the 2013-14 season. This is Fordham’s third overall championship title. 

Fordham senior forward Mary Goulding amassed 19 points for the second consecutive game and also added four steals. Goulding was named the championship’s Most Outstanding Player, averaging 20.7 points and shooting 57.5 percent from the field over the team’s three games.

“I was surprised because it really wasn’t in my head," she said. “I never thought I could be in this position in my life ever. The team and coaches have had my back. That makes me believe in myself.”

Bre Cavanaugh led all scorers with 22 points, while also grabbing seven rebounds to join Goulding on the All-Championship Team. Cavanaugh scored 70 points over three Atlantic 10 Championship games and had five turnovers in 113 total minutes of play.

VCU was paced by Danielle Hammond’s 13 points and five rebounds, to which Taya Robinson added nine points, eight rebounds and five assists. Both were named to the Atlantic 10 All-Championship Team.

“Beth did an incredible job with VCU, there is no question they will be back,” Fordham coach Stephanie Gaitley said. 

A big advantage for Fordham came in points off turnovers as it had 16, while VCU totaled five points.

Fordham first took the lead a few minutes into the game and maintained that advantage, but were tested in the third quarter as Goulding battled foul trouble and the team went scoreless for a several minutes while VCU made enough baskets to cutting the point deficit back into single digits. But Fordham fought off the comeback with a strong fourth quarter to take the title.

Fordham won all three of its Atlantic 10 Championship games by double digits and also set an individual tournament record for most 3-point baskets made, sinking 13 in a quarterfinal win over Massachusetts and a semifinal victory over Duquesne.

“It feels like a dream,” said Goulding. “We just knew it in our hearts, that this was our chance. When it hits you, it is just overwhelming.”

The final spot of the All-Championship Team was filled by Dayton’s Jayla Scaife.

Fordham, which has now won 12 consecutive games, awaits Selection Monday in just over a week’s time to find out its seeding and where it will play in the NCAA tournament.

Atlantic 10 All-Championship Team

Jayla Scaife- Dayton
Bre Cavanaugh- Fordham
Mary Goulding- Fordham
Danielle Hammond- VCU
Taya Robinson- VCU

Most Outstanding Player

Mary Goulding- Fordham

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