St. Francis (Pa.) downs women’s hoops, 78-54

Lenny Neslin

The Quinnipiac women’s basketball team needed a win against St. Francis (Pa.) Thursday night to get back into playoff contention. Instead, the Red Flash shot 50 percent from the floor and beat the Bobcats 78-54 at DeGol Arena in Loretto, Pa.

St. Francis (11-14, 8-7 NEC) clinched a playoff berth with the win, while Quinnipiac (10-16, 5-10 NEC) stands in ninth place tied with Mount St. Mary’s.

Senior center Courtney Kaminski led Quinnipiac with 17 points and seven rebounds, but St. Francis senior Britney Hodges and junior Allison Daly combined for 43 points to fuel the victory.

Quinnipiac head coach Tricia Fabbri said fatigue played a role in the loss.

“I thought the execution was good, but we just ran out of gas down the stretch,” Fabbri said. “We had a good effort, but we just couldn’t get anything going in the second half. This team is going to find a way in the final couple of games, as they are very hard working.”

The Bobcats trailed by only two points at halftime, 32-30, but the Red Flash pulled away in the second half.

Kaminski’s two free throws 4:45 into the half gave Quinnipiac a 38-36 lead, but it proved to be its last of the game after Hodges buried a 3-pointer on their next possession.

The three opened a 24-5 scoring run for St. Francis that spanned less than eight minutes. Hodges finished with 20 points and seven assists.

Junior forward Lailah Pratt scored a career-high 11 points and had four steals in 30 minutes of action for QU, while freshman guard Lisa Lebak recorded a team-high six assists.

The Bobcats take on first-place Robert Morris on Saturday at 4 p.m. in Moon Township, Pa.