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Bona women surprised by UMass; UB women win on road over Falcons

St. Bonaventure’s women’s basketball team suffered a very surprising loss on Saturday afternoon.

Who would have thought that Massachusetts would pick this particular day to win its first Atlantic 10 game of the season?

That’s what happened, as the Minutewomen recorded a 69-60 win at the Mullins Center. Bona fell to 20-5 overall and 9-3 in the Atlantic 10. The Bonnies now have lost two of their last three games, with the other loss coming to Virginia Commonwealth. UMass moved to 7-11, 1-11 A-10.

The Minutewomen had lost eight games by single digits during the course of the conference season. This time, they did enough to win a close one.

Cierra Dillara led UMass with 20 points. Bria Stallworth had 15 points and five assists, while Kymber Hill had 14 points.

Katie Healy (Lancaster) had 16 points for St. Bonaventure, while Nyla Rueter had 15 points and Miranda Drummond added 12.

The Bonnies looked to be in control of this one, taking a 42-32 lead in the third quarter. However, UMass answered with seven straight points to get back in the game. The game stayed close through the middle of the fourth quarter, when UMass ran off six more points to take a 61-56 lead. The Minutewomen were 16 of 22 from the line.

Bona must play better on Wednesday at home, when the team faces Atlantic 10 leader George Washington.

Elsewhere, the University at Buffalo’s women’s team looked like it was headed for a tight finish after three quarters. Then the Bulls went on a 15-6 rampage to take a 63-50 win over Bowling Green in Ohio.

Stephanie Reid had a big game for UB, leading the Bulls with 21 points. She was 8 for 18 from the field, including a 4 for 7 performance from three-point land. Reid also led her team with four assists. Joanna Smith and Mirte Scheper both added 11 points, and Smith led UB with nine rebounds. For BG, Lauren Tibbs was the top scorer with 15 points.

The game seemed to change early in the fourth quarter. UB was holding on to a 50-46 lead. Reid answered a Falcons’ basket with a three-pointer, and Karin Moss followed with a jumper on a pass from Reid. Shortly after that, Reid hit another jump shot, and the 7-0 run put the Bulls up by 11 with 6:43 left. The lead never fell under double digits after that.

UB, which had lost seven of eight entering the game, improved its record to 12-11, 4-8 in the Mid-American Conference. Bowling Green fell to 8-13 overall, 4-8 MAC.

After playing four of six on the road, it’s time for the Bulls to enjoy some home cooking. UB will play its next three games at home, starting Wednesday against Western Michigan.

Sunday’s games

• The Canisius’ men will spend some of Valentine’s Day in Jersey City, NJ, for a game with Saint Peter’s (3 p.m., Radio 1230 AM). The Golden Griffins have followed three straight wins by losing five of their last six, including a game with Siena on Thursday. Canisius comes into the game at 11-15 overall, 6-9 in MAAC play.

• Niagara’s men’s team hopes that history will repeat itself in Sunday’s visit to Rider (2 p.m., Radio 1400 AM). The Purple Eagles defeated the Broncs in a visit to Lawrenceville, N.J., last year. In order to improve its record from the current 6-20 (4-11 Metro Atlantic), Niagara will need a good effort from Matt Scott. He is seventh in the MAAC in scoring, fourth in rebounds and seventh in steals.

• Canisius’ women’s team is in the midst of a five-game homestand, which represents a chance to pick up some wins and move up the MAAC standings. That will be tough against Marist, the conference leader. The Golden Griffins ended a three-game losing streak by beating Rider on Friday night.

• The Niagara women look for a weekend split when they host Rider for a 2 p.m. game. The Purple Eagles are coming off a loss to Marist on Friday night. Niagara is looking for its sixth win of the MAAC season and a sweep of the season series.