Mary Kate Cusack Huge During Elite 8 Championships

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The St. John Fisher College women's basketball won the Empire 8 Conference Championship on Saturday, as the third-seeded Cardinals held on for an 86-84 overtime-win over host Ithaca College.
With the win, Fisher (21-6) earns an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Championship.  The Cardinals will find out on Monday afternoon who and where they will play in the 64-team national tournament.
Junior Mary Kate Cusack scored a career-high 41 points and was selected as the Championship's Most Valuable Player.  The guard tied the Fisher game-record for 3-pointer with eight for the second time in 14 days.  The 41 points were one shy of the Fisher single-game record of 42, set by Melissa Hartman (2005) and Sue Mulroney (1979).

It was a back-and-forth game early on that featured 13 lead changes and six ties.The Cardinals led by as 12 at 19-7 just five minutes into the game. Ithaca came storming, however, and used a 22-3 run over the next seven minutes to take the lead.  

The Bombers led 42-38 at the half, but Fisher regained the lead on a 3-pointer from Cusack with 16 minutes left, making it 49-48.

Fisher would lead by as many as eight at 76-68 with just under five minutes left.  Ithaca, however, went on a 11-0 run to take a 79-76 lead with just over two minutes.
Cusack again answered for the Cardinals draining a 3-pointer on the ensuing possession, knotting the game at 79, where it would stay until the end of regulation.
Fisher would next trail in overtime. Senior Portia Velasco scored back-to-back buckets on Fisher's first two possessions in overtime.  Ithaca trimmed Fisher's lead down to one point with just over 30 seconds left.  After Cusack converted on 1-of-2 free throws with 12.7 seconds left, the Bombers attempted a potential game-winning 3-pointer from the top of the key as the horn sounded, but the shot clanged off the front of the rim.

Velasco finished with 19 points and four assists, while fellow senior Sydney Bloomstein grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds, while scoring eight points.

Madison Rowland Named East Coast Conference Player of the Week

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Central Islip, N.Y. - Queens College sophomore, Madison Rowland was named East Coast Conference Women's Basketball Player of the Week, it was announced by the league office on Monday.  This marks the fifth time this season that the sophomore has captured the award, more than any other player in the conference.
In a 2-0 week for the Knights, Rowland averaged 19 points, ten rebounds and four steals per contest; as the team went 2-0.  She came off the bench to finish with 14 points in a 74-61 win over NYIT.  The 14 points gave her 1000 career points, making her just the ninth player in school history to reach that milestone.  In a fait accompli, overtime win against LIU Post, the Cohoes, New York, native posted a double-double with 25 points and 13 rebounds.  She shot 50% from the field in that game.

The team returns to action on Tuesday, February 24, when they host Molloy.  The opening tip is slated for 5:30 PM.

Cusack Scores 1,000th Point As Fisher Wins Big At Alfred

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Junior Mary Kate Cusack became the 22nd player in the 41-year history of women's basketball at St. John Fisher College to score 1,000 points on Tuesday, as the Cardinals picked up an 82-55 win over host Alfred University.

With the win, Fisher improves to 18-5 overall and 11-3 in the Empire 8 Conference.

Ten different players scored for Fisher in the win, with every player seeing at least eight minutes of action.

Cusack, who entered the game needing just six points to reach the historic milestone, scored her 1,000th point on a layup with 14:05 left in the first half, giving her team an 18-4 lead, and the Cardinals never looked back.  The junior guard also moved into second place at Fisher in career 3-pointers with 173 in the win and finished the game with 17 points.
Senior Portia Velasco led the way for Fisher with 20 points.  She became just the sixth player in Fisher history to over the 1,400-point mark for her career.

Fellow senior Sydney Bloomstein tallied 15 points and a career-high 12 rebounds, marking the first double-double in her 100-game career.

Emily Piacentini tallied eight points and six steals in the win, while Nicole Robinson totaled eight points and seven rebounds.

Fisher returns to action at 6 p.m. on Friday at Hartwick College.   The Cardinals will then close out the regular season at 3 p.m. on Saturday at Stevens Institute of Technology.  Fisher has already earned one of four spots in the following weekend's Empire 8 Conference Championship.

2015 High School Tryout Dates Announced

header 19The 2015 Saratoga Sparks season is quickly approaching. The dates and times for our High School aged players are listed below:
Tryout dates and times are listed below:

Saturday March 7th, 2015, Union College
9th Grade 9:00am - 10:30am
10th Grade 10:45am - 12:15pm
11th Garde 12:30pm - 2:00pm

Sunday March 8th, 2015, Union College
9th Grade 9:00am - 10:30am
10th Grade 10:45am - 12:15pm
11th Garde 12:30pm - 2:00pm

Please use your existing Hoopdog account and visit the Sparks Profile page to register for this years tryouts. We really need everyone to register in order to properly plan to make the most out of the time we have together.

If you’ve forgotten your password, don’t worry, use the “Forgot my Password” link at the top right hand side of the home screen.

If you have any questions please visit and post them to our comments page.


Mary Kate Cusack, Player of the Week

Women’s Basketball Player – St. John Fisher
Mary Kate Cusack, Junior, Guard – Clifton Park, NY/Shenendehowa

In a 3-0 week, Mary Kate Cusack averaged 16 points, five steals and 2.7 assists, while shooting 53.6 percent from the floor and a perfect 14-for-14 from the foul line. She scored 13 of her 17 points in the second half as Fisher erased an 11-point deficit and gave Ithaca its first Empire 8 loss on Saturday. The junior scored Fisher's final six points – all of which came at the foul line. On Friday, she finished with eight steals in a win over Houghton.

Once a Spark... Always a Spark...

"Most people have the will to win, few have the will to prepare to win."

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