BRONXVILLE, N.Y. – Felician University freshman guard Bionca Chambers (New Milford, N.J.) made two steals in the final minute to help preserve her team's 59-57 Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference women's basketball victory over host Dominican (N.Y.) College on Thursday evening on the Hennessy Center's Coach Baxter Court. Chambers led all players with a season-high 22 points.
Felician (9-14, 7-9 CACC) extended its lead over idle Post University (6-16, 5-11) to two games for the final playoff spot from the CACC North Division with three games to play. The Golden Falcons have not qualified for the conference tournament since 2014.
In gaining a split of its two-game season series with Dominican, the Golden Falcons also vaulted into a third-place tie with the Chargers (8-17, 7-9) in the CACC North. Felician has won three consecutive games for the first time since Jan. 10-21, 2015.
On Thursday, Felician entered the fourth period with a 46-44 lead, and never trailed in the quarter. But the contest was tied for the second time in the period and the fifth occasion in the game, 57-57, on a pair of free throws by Dominican freshman Taylor Tomlinson (Middletown, N.Y.) with one minute, 23, seconds left in regulation.
Golden Falcon junior Kameron Stone (Bronx, N.Y.) nailed a jump shot at the 1:01 mark which proved to be the night's final points. Chambers came up with a steal, and Felician ran the clock down before having to force a jumper to avoid a shot clock violation. The Chargers rebounded at 0:15 and called timeout at 0:10. A Dominican player drove into the low post but lost control, and the ball ended up in the hands of Chambers, who dribbled out the final few seconds.
Felician survived 33-percent shooting from the floor, in part by committing a season-low nine turnovers. Freshman Sophia Guerrier (Waltham, Mass.) totaled 12 points and nine rebounds for the Golden Falcons, and Stone ended up with 10 points.
Senior Rebecca Rabeiro (Midland Park, N.J.) led the Chargers with 13 points, including the 1,000th of her career. Tomlinson scored 12 points, and Dominican junior Ciera Rivera (Pomona, N.Y.) amassed 11 points and 11 rebounds.
Felician freshman Nicole Pimentel (Newark, N.J.) made a three-point field goal in the closing seconds to allow her team to exit the first quarter trailing, 19-16. The Chargers scored seven consecutive points later in period two to open an eight-point edge, their largest of the night, before a Guerrier bucket made the spread 34-28 at halftime. Felician flipped the script with a 12-2 run early in the third, taking the lead for good, 39-38, on a Chambers three with 6:39 left in the period.
Chambers' 22 points were the most by a Felician freshman since Shyla Osmond scored 24 on Jan. 10, 2015.
Felician returns home to face Chestnut Hill College on Saturday at 1 p.m. in Rutherford, N.J. The Golden Falcons will sponsor "Play4Kay Day" in an effort to fight women's cancers.