AMHERST, N.Y. (Feb. 18, 2018) – Sophomore guard Beth Bonin scored 27 points for the Queens College women's basketball team but the Knights were unable to fend off a pesky Daemen squad on the Wildcats' Senior Day on Sunday (Feb. 18) as the hosts claimed a 57-55 win at Lumsden Gymnasium.
The loss for Queens (11-13, 7-9 ECC) keeps the Knights from clinching a postseason berth for the moment. QC is still sixth in the conference standings, up two games on Bridgeport with two games left to play. Daemen (12-14, 9-7 ECC) strengthened its hold on the No. 5 seed in the conference playoff picture and inched closer to NYIT for a potential No. 4 seed.
Bonin scored on the game's first possession to give Queens an early 2-0 lead and Merrick Rowland extended the lead with two minutes gone by in the opening frame. The action was back-and-forth for much of the quarter with Marina Ramon Lopez hitting back-to-back buckets to give QC a 12-7 lead with 100 seconds remaining before Daemen closed out the period on a 6-0 run. The Wildcats led 13-12 after one following a lay-up by Caroline White to end the frame. The second quarter swung the way of the Knights early as Emer Moloney rattled home a lay-up to put the Knights up briefly before Sarah Saba collected a second-chance bucket with seven-and-a-half minutes left in the first half. The hosts lost the lead on the next possession as Bonin hit a three-pointer off a feed from Kaitlyn Mahon, giving the Knights a 17-15 lead; the sophomore guard would score on another three-ball less than a minute later from Mahon and the lead swelled to five points with six minutes left in the half. Bonin ended the first half with 14 points but Daemen closed out the half on a 10-8 spurt to keep the contest to a three-point game as the Knights led 28-25 at halftime.
Mahon kicked off the second half with four straight points to push QC's lead to seven points at 32-25 but the Wildcats rolled back into the game on the back of Saba. The senior guard hit a three-pointer and then responded to Ramon Lopez's two-point basket with a field goal of her own as Daemen trailed 34-30 with four minutes played in the third quarter. The hosts took the lead at the midway point of the quarter as Young and White both scored off of assists by Carina Pringle, but Ramon Lopez's lay-up at the 4:47 mark of the period gave QC a 36-35 edge. The senior forward from Spain scored on two more baskets in a row---collecting offensive rebounds and second-chance efforts along the way---as the Knights took a 40-35 lead with two minutes remaining in the quarter. Once again, the Wildcats would find a way back into the fray as Tiara Filbert scored four straight points to bring Daemen within a point at 42-41. Two free throws and a buzzer-beating lay-up from Bonin gave Queens a five-point lead that the Knights would take with them into the fourth quarter in Amherst.
The Wildcats attempted the comeback in the fourth once again as a Taylor Heinold three-ball brought Daemen with a 47-44 deficit, but Bonin would not be denied her chance at the postseason as the sophomore hit two jumpers in a span of sixty seconds to push Queens back in front by seven points with eight minutes left in regulation. The pesky hosts refused to go away, however as Filbert scored five points in a row with a lay-up bringing Daemen within two points at 51-49 midway through the period. Two free throws from Saba and eight seconds later, and the game was tied at 51-all.
Following several possessions without a bucket, Bonin and Saba traded lay-ups but the latter bucket was a three-point play as the Knights trailed 54-53. Following a time-out, Ramon Lopez scored on a lay-up after a feed from Bonin to give the Knights a 55-54 lead with 90 seconds left in the game. On the Wildcats' next possession, Erin Egan missed a lay-up and got her own rebound; she was then fouled and hit two free throws to put Daemen back ahead by a point at 56-55. The Knights were not successful on their next possession as the hosts recovered the basketball with 43 seconds to play in regulation. Pringle hit a free throw fifteen seconds later to give Daemen a 57-55 lead and the Knights had a couple more chances to tie or win but a last-second three-ball would not fall.
Bonin added four assists, four steals and three rebounds to go along with her game-high of 27 points. The sophomore guard hit 9-of-24 from the field; meanwhile Ramon Lopez had 14 points and 11 rebounds in the loss for the Knights. Queens shot 36% (23-64) from the floor while Daemen hit 43% (21-49) of its field goals. The Wildcats were led by a 20-point effort from Saba, who also added eight rebounds. Filbert collected 13 points and five rebounds while Pringle had seven assists. Daemen yielded just nine points to the Knights in the fourth-quarter comeback.
Queens will travel to Nyack, N.Y. on Wednesday (Feb. 21) for a 6 p.m. match-up with Mercy College; the Knights need just one win in their final two games to make the postseason.