Women’s Basketball: For BU, this season is about Caitlin Weimar and Alex Giannaros, and that’s a good thing

Featured image by Jacob Ireland

By Sam Robb O’Hagan

Caitlin Weimar and Alex Giannaros are not done yet. 

Never mind the loss of six critical teammates from last year. Never mind the eight new players — the eight kids — that were brought in to fill that crater. Never mind a program that appears hurtling towards a new era. And never mind the idea that this era of Boston University women’s basketball, the one that watched a 17-1 regular season conference record end heartbreakingly short of a Patriot League Championship last year, has missed their opportunity to go to the dance.

Never mind all of it. The senior forward and junior guard are still here, and they’ve just kept on going. 

And what does it look like when the Patriot League Preseason Player of the Year and the nation’s reigning 3-point percentage champion get even better?

Through 10 games, the Terriers are averaging 62 points per game. That’s third-highest in the conference, and Weimar and Giannaros are scoring more than half of them. Only one team in the Patriot League doesn’t have at least three players averaging seven points a game; it is BU, whose third-leading scorer is putting up just 6.9 points a night. BU’s 7-3 record is second-best in the conference. Yes, Weimar and Giannaros have been that good.

This is, of course, far from a coming-out party, but the improvement of the Terriers’ two best players has got BU, which plays their last non-conference game on Friday at Northeastern before opening Patriot League play on January 3 against Navy, right back in the race for the conference title.

Weimar, who was so close with Maren Durant on and off the court last season she still calls the now-graduated forward her her “postmate,” has handled being the center of attention in her senior year seamlessly. Her 17.9 points per game are up from 15.5 last season, and her assists are up ever-so-slightly as well.

Against Harvard on December 9, she faced double- and even triple-teams, something she seldom faced last season, and did brilliantly to pass out of them and find open shooters. BU put up their most points, shot their highest percentage, and earned arguably their most impressive win of the season that night. Everyone played well — and it started and ended with their star forward’s presence in the post.

“I thought Cait did a tremendous job of passing out of the post, with five assists,” head coach Melissa Graves said after that game. “She’s had to really work on that, you know, because now she’s getting double- and triple-teamed, and to add that piece to her game is really, really special.”

Teams are sending the house at Weimar this season, because when they don’t, as Harvard found out — a casual 29 points on 12-for-20 shooting. UMass Lowell, BU’s first opponent of the season, can vouch for that one too; Weimar shredded the River Hawks for 33 points, including a game-winning, buzzer-beating hook shot over a helpless defender.


There isn’t a player in the Patriot League that has as great of an impact on her team as Weimar. “She’s just affected this team in such a positive way, on the floor being so dominant,” Graves said. 

But Giannaros is about as good of a supporting star — and she has become a star — as it gets in this conference. The junior guard’s pedigree at Case Gym was built on her 3-point title last season, but her work from behind the arc is quickly becoming old news for BU.

She scored 111 points on non-3-pointers in 25 games in 2022. In 10 games this season, she’s scored 70. Even more promising — Giannaros took 35 free throws all of last year; this season, she’s already taken 30.

“She was mostly a shooter last year,” Graves said after BU’s most recent victory on December 12 against DIII Emmanuel. “Now, she’s a three-level scorer.”

It’s plays like this one, also against Harvard, that are so exciting:


The Crimson guard desperately closes out when the ball is worked out to Giannaros behind the arc — “she led the nation in 3-point field goal percentage, so you know people are going to scout that heavily,” Graves said — so, Giannaros takes one step to the right and the defender bites on it hard — “she was all right (last season),” said Graves — before exploding down the lane with her left — “(now) she can go almost equally, either way,” — and willing a bucket, plus the foul, against two defenders that towered over her 5-foot-5 frame.

Giannaros has made tough buckets like that, inside the arc, all season long.

Later against Harvard, Giannaros sold another Crimson defender with a sudden crossover back to her left, before driving into the paint and slipping into a passing window to feed Weimar for an easy layup.


Then, in the fourth quarter as BU trailed by three, Giannaros was met all the way out at the logo by a Harvard defender, but she easily created space with an ‘in-n-out’ dribble, exploding down the lane and feeding Weimar for a critical and-1 layup.


Giannaros recorded a career-high seven assists on top of her season-high four 3-pointers against the Crimson. A few days earlier against undefeated St. Joe’s, she scored 13 points and dished out five assists… without making a 3.

“She wanted to be a multi-dimensional player,” Graves said. She has become one and then some. As has Weimar, who, with her improvements passing out of the post, is becoming almost impossible to guard.

The Terriers are as top-heavy as it gets — remember, their third-leading scorer is averaging under seven points a game — but BU’s top two are unmatched in the conference.

It is fair to worry that none of the new faces around them have established themselves before being thrown into the deep end that is conference play. And it is fair to wonder whether BU’s extremely uncomplicated schematic identity — basically just daring teams to stop two players — is potentially uncomplicated to a fault. What happens if either Weimar or Giannaros has an off-night is still a valid and possibly season-defining question for the Terriers. 

It is also still pretty difficult to deny that, despite the improvement of their two returning stars, BU’s ceiling is quite a bit lower this season without the likes of Durant, Sydney Johson, Maggie Pina, Sam Crispe and Lauren Davenport (but for Durant, all of those players are currently playing at Power Five schools).

And it is really concerning to ponder what this team will look like next year, when Weimar will probably be gone, potentially off to a High-major program herself.

But, for now, Graves and the Terriers have one unguardable force on the court for 31 minutes a night and another that is well on her way to becoming one.

BU is 7-3. Caitlin Weimar and Alex Giannaros are two of the best players in the Patriot League. 

So never mind that looming rebuild. BU is not done yet.