The LIU Post Pioneers women’s basketball team split the week, defeating Mercy College 81-59 on Wednesday, February 8th, and then being defeated in overtime by Saint Thomas Aquinas on Saturday, February 11th, by a score of 72-65.
The Pioneers move to 17-8 on the season and 8-5 in conference play.
In the win on Wednesday, the Pioneers shot 42.5 percent (31-73) from the field and 30.4 percent (7-23) from three-point range. Senior guard Felicia Joyner led the team in scoring with 18 points and added two assists in her 33 minutes of playing time. Freshman guard Chelsea Williams contributed 15 points of her own as well as one steal, and Samantha Kopp had 13 points and three blocks.
Mercy College jumped out to an early two-point lead in the opening minutes of the game. The Pioneers stayed with them, keeping within two points, until they tied the game at eight less than five minutes in. Sophomore guard Alexis Peters hit a lay up inside the paint and gave the Pioneers the lead, 10-8, and they did not look back. They would go on a 7-0 run to make the score 15-8. And, at one point, they led by as much as 10 points. The Pioneers finished the half up 39-33.
In the second half, Mercy College made an early attempt to gain ground on the Pioneers. At one point, Mercy managed to pull within three after senior forward Talia Beaulieu hit a jump shot to make it 45-42, but it was the closest the Mavericks would come to tying the game. The Pioneers would then go on a 9-0 run to go ahead by 12. The Pioneers’ largest lead of the half was 24, and they eventually won the game 81-59.
On Saturday, the Pioneers faced a tougher opponent in Saint Thomas Aquinas. The Pioneers managed to jump to an early 9-4 lead after a three-pointer from graduate forward Catherine Lutz. However, going into the half, the Spartans had a narrow advantage, leading 36-35.
The two teams traded leads in the second half, with the Spartans eventually grabbing a six-point lead with 1:12 left in the game. But, the Pioneers stayed with them, as Joyner hit a three-pointer with 42 seconds left to cut the lead to two. On the following possession, Spartans’ junior guard Bianca Kowgios missed a jump shot, which would have put the game out of reach for the Pioneers. Instead, Joyner once again came up clutch, hitting a three-pointer to tie the game with three seconds left.
But, overtime would not go the Pioneers’ way. The Spartans jumped out to an early four-point lead off buckets from senior forward Briana Sloper. The Pioneers would come within two points but could not capture the lead or tie the game. Eventually, the Pioneers fell to the Spartans 72-65.
The Pioneers’ next game is at home against Queens College on Wednesday, February 15th, at 5 p.m.