Conquistadors score a fifth straight win

Conquistadors score a fifth straight win graphic.
Conquistadors score a fifth straight win. (Feb. 2, 2024)

(Box Score)

HIALEAH, Fla. (Feb. 2, 2024) – For the second time this season, Florida National University’s women’s basketball team (9-10) tackled a competitive battle against the Crowley’s Ridge College Pioneers (8-12). Luckily for the Conquistadors, a fourth-quarter surge allowed FNU to secure an 89-76 win over the Pioneers to open its time at the CAC Classic in Paragould, Arkansas. The Pioneers previously survived a Jan. 12 match-up versus FNU in Temple Terrace, Fla., 88-87. 

FNU’s tough loss at Florida College seemed fresh on everyone’s mind, as the Conquistadors held on to a 24-21 lead after the opening quarter. Forward Louise Pilley has truly found her role with this squad, putting up six points in the frame while Jullie Ruiz Paneto posted four dimes and six points. CRC’s Ansley Dawson had three turnovers in the first but led all Pioneer scorers with seven before heading into the second. 

CRC had some moments before halftime, heading into the break up 41-39. Travia Woodruff had a great stretch in the period, recording five points and five boards. Notably, Kaylee Llanos was responsible for seven of FNU’s 15 points in the quarter. CRC controlled the pace of the game and outrebounded FNU 15-8.  

The Conquistadors were able to put themselves ahead in the third quarter thanks to a nine-point explosion from Ruiz Paneto. FNU held the Pioneers to 35.3% shooting from the field and allowed CRC to make just one trip to the free throw line. In the fourth, a made layup from Llanos tied the game at 65 before a Woodruff free throw gave CRC a one-point lead. 

Despite a quiet game until that point, Janelisse Marty Marrero connected on a huge three set up by Ruiz Paneto which kicked an impressive 21-10 scoring run over the last 6:56 of the fourth. FNU was able to convert defense to offense at the drop of a hat, ushering in its ninth win of the year shooting 61.1% in the fourth.

A 14-point fourth quarter contributed to a team-high 28-point afternoon for Llanos. Pilley and Marty Marrero combined for 27, while Ruiz Paneto posted a double-double with 22 points and 13 assists. 

Up Next: The Conquistadors close their time in Arkansas tomorrow with a 2 p.m. game versus Arkansas Baptist. 

Continental Athletic Conference (CAC) logo.