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Women’s basketball wins 12th straight
Felicia Barron drops 18 as Bobcats defeat Red Flash, 61-50
Twenty three games into the season, and the teams of Northeast Conference have yet to find an answer for Quinnipiac.
The Saint Francis (Pa.) Red Flash had as good of a chance to win as any team the Bobcats have faced in their impressive 12-game winning streak. Despite a heroic effort, Quinnipiac women’s basketball rolled to a 61-50 victory on Senior Day. The team’s seniors, Lisa Lebak, Shelby Sferra, and Felicia Barron, were honored Saturday.
“I’m a five year senior, just coming here and feeling all the love and support from my fans and my family was a great experience,” Barron said after the game. “I’m glad we got this win on Senior Day it was a special day for the seniors, me Lisa and Shelby. We didn’t want to lose on senior day and get our first loss on the season.”
The win did not come easy. The final score does not tell full the story of this game; the Red Flash had their way with the Bobcats through much of the first half, especially on defense. They led by as much as 10 points with less than five minutes left in the half. The Bobcats shot just 28.6 percent from the field in the first half and went 0-of-10 from 3-point range.
“I thought they did a really good job in their zone pressure. They really challenged us and got us out of our rhythm which is what we want to do in transition,” Quinnipiac head coach Tricia Fabbri said. “When we met the first time out in PA we had our transition game going and ended up scoring 85 points. When you’re seeing teams for the second time and you’re getting closer into March people are really familiar with personnel and tendencies and that staff did a really good job in disrupting what we’ve been able to do and have a lot of success with.”
As they have done all season, Quinnipiac stayed resilient. The Bobcats fought hard toward the end of the first half to cut the St. Francis lead to five points, and in the second half they took over.
“Going into halftime our coach tells us exactly what she wants us to do and we just decide we have to go out there and do it,” Jasmine Martin said. “I think if we fight and do what we do, no team in this conference can beat us. Our offense isn’t the best, we still have to play defense I think if we just defend and do what we’re supposed to I think we’ll be just fine.”
The Bobcats held the Red Flash to 21 points in the second half on 23.5 percent shooting. The Bobcats turned around their own shooting woes, shooting 45.8 percent from the field en route to 37 points in the second half.
Down the stretch, Jasmine Martin was the key for the team. Martin’s layup tied the game with eight minutes to go. She then hit a pair of free throws to give the team the lead followed by a long jump shot to expand upon that. She finished the game with 17 points, 12 coming in the second half.
“I think today I showed another side of myself actually to myself. Usually if I’m having a bad game I usually take myself out of the game so I was able to stay in the game and bring myself back,” Martin said. “I easily could have been like I’m not gonna continue to play, but I decided I need to be here for my team we’re not going to lose this game.”
Felicia Barron was the only player on the team to hit a three point shot, and they both came at critical moments. The first tied the game at 31 to give Quinnipiac the lead for the first time after their rough first half. The second came immediately after Martin’s 6-0 run to build on the Bobcat’s lead and put the Red Flash in their rearview mirror. Barron scored 18 points in total on the day and did it all while battling through injuries that visibly affected her during the game. These injuries have bothered her not just through the season but through her entire career, yet she has continued to fight through them every game.
“I did tear my ACL my freshman and sophomore year. I’ve been going through rehab for the past two years and I came back a lot stronger than I was before. I do get tired at times because of my surgery but I’m hanging in there,” Barron said. “I’m just grinding out to win that championship.”
The Bobcats will look to extend their 13 game winning streak and stay unbeaten in the NEC on Feb. 18, when Robert Morris visits the TD Bank Sports Center.