By Michael Otero
The Pioneers stepped on their home court for the first time this season on Wednesday, Dec. 2, when they welcomed Mercy College to the Pratt Recreation Center. The Green and Gold came out strong and shot at a 50 percent clip for the first half, which set the tone for the game. Senior guard Quanisha Ratley scored 12 of her season-high 18 in the first half, as the Pioneers took a 36-19 lead into intermission.
In the second half, the Pioneers let their foot off the gas slightly, but kept the damage under control and ended up winning by a score of 63-55. Freshman guard Shannon Doyle finished with 12 points while senior forward Nyasia Davis and senior guard Jalyn Brown had 10 points each.
The Pioneers returned to the hardwood on Saturday, Dec. 5, when they traveled to face St. Thomas Aquinas College. In that battle, the Pioneers scored just six points in the opening ten minutes and that was a microcosm of the afternoon as points were hard to come by and the Pioneers fell 48-41.
Junior forward Janaysia James led LIU with 14 points on 12 shots in her 30 minutes of action while sophomore guard Khea Gibbs also played well scoring nine points with two assists and a couple steals. On the other side of the ball, sophomore guard Jenna Erickson led in the scoring department for St. Thomas with 14 points while they played stifling defense against the Pioneers, limiting them to just 23 percent shooting from the field.
The Green and Gold will get back at it on Wednesday, Dec. 9, when they host the University of Bridgeport. Opening tip is set for 5 p.m.