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Bearcats lose big lead late in conference opener

STONY BROOK, N.Y. -- The Binghamton women's basketball team (5-9, 0-1 AE) put forth a valiant effort at Stony Brook (9-5, 1-0 AE) but lost its America East Conference opener 64-58 on Wednesday afternoon at Island FCU Arena.

Sophomore guard Imani Watkins poured in a game-high and season-best 27 points. She also added seven rebounds, three assists and a pair of steals. It marked the sixth time this season and ninth time in her career that she has netted at least 20 points.

Sophomore forward Alyssa James, meanwhile, finished with 13 points, eight rebounds and a game-high three blocks.

Stony Brook was led by Brittany Snow, who scored 20 points, and Davion Wingate with 19 points. Ogechi Anyagaligbo added 15 points and a game-high 14 rebounds.

The Bearcats were within 14-13 thru one period of play and then outscored the Seawolves 23-10 over the next 10 minutes to go up 36-24 at the half.

Watkins scored 13 of her points in the second period alone. Binghamton as a team connected on nine of 16 field goal attempts (53 percent).

Binghamton was able to maintain a 51-42 lead at the end of the third quarter. The Bearcats continued to be sharp from the field, hitting six of their 14 shots (43 percent) during that 10-minute stretch.

Over the final 10 minutes, however, the Seawolves came storming back to tie the game at 52-52 on a three-point field goal by Scognamiglio with 6:50 remaining.

James converted a three-point play with 1:56 left to go, giving Binghamton a 57-56 lead. Snow, however, hit back-to-back layups, putting Stony Brook up 59-56 with 50 seconds left.

Watkins scored her final two points on a layup with 42 seconds left, trimming the deficit to 59-58. The Seawolves then iced the game by converting five of six free throws the rest of the way.

Senior guard Kim Albrecht and freshman guard Rebecca Carmody each added nine points for the Bearcats. Carmody also grabbed six rebounds.

Binghamton returns home to face New Hampshire on Saturday at 4 p.m.

(Courtesy: BU Athletics)