WASHINGTON — American University women's basketball team is closing in on making history.
The program has never gone to the NCAA Tournament in back-to-back seasons.
That would change on Sunday, if the Eagles beat the Bucknell Bison.
Beating Bucknell, on the road, will not be an easy task for the Patriot League regular season co-champions.
American's senior class has never won at Bucknell.
The seniors are 0-6 on the road against the Bison, including two Patriot League Tournament losses.
The last time the American University women's basketball team beat Bucknell on the road was New Year's Eve, 2014.
The Eagles hope to put an end to that streak on Sunday, and they say it starts on the defensive end.
"We just have to play really good defense," says senior guard Kaitlyn Lewis. "I think our offense is doing really well right now, we have a lot of chemistry right now, and we're on a good flow. So if we go in there and play good defense, I think it'll be a tight game. If we play good defense, I think we have a really good chance to pull out the win."
For the team on Thursday, the focus was on making sure the seniors win in what could be their final game at Bender Arena.
"It's really special," says senior forward Cecily Carl. "That was our last key to victory today, to have a home finale for our class. To play here for four years, and to have the success that we've had on this floor for four years, is just really special to me."
"It meant a lot," adds Kaitlyn Lewis. I know the three of us, our seniors, we're really excited. Coach Meg [Gebbia] mentioned it before the game, depending on what happened with Bucknell and Holy Cross it could be our last home game. So, we really wanted to come out strong and play for our families and fans, and just come off with a win."
As for the possibility of making back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Tournament, head coach Megan Gebbia says it would be really special.
"I guess it's never been done here so that would be pretty awesome," says Gebbia. "Especially with graduating six seniors from last year's team, and just having five freshmen trying to work their butts off right now. I'm so proud of them in practice. Even if they don't get into the games, they're pushing the starters in practice. I just love their energy. It would be really special if we can get back there."