Natasha Howard – Liberty
The Liberty clinched the 10th and final WNBA playoff spot on the last day of the season, led by a handful of strong performances. Leading the way for New York on offense was Natasha Howard, who scored 24 points and recorded a double-double with 10 rebounds. She was one of four players with 10+ points as the Liberty fended off the Mystics with a 91-80 win. In last Wednesday’s loss to Connecticut, Howard was the only Liberty player to crack 20 points, also totaling a team-leading eight assists and 37 minutes played. With the playoffs starting Thursday night, the Liberty could use some more big performances from Howard as they look to upset the Phoenix Mercury.
Damien Barker – QBFC II
Damien Barker put together the best offensive game of the year for Queensboro FC, as the red-hot USL Academy Team thrashed Pathfinder FC for their 10th win of the year. In the 9-0 beatdown, Barker found the net four times, including a hat trick in the first half. He capitalized on turnovers and sloppy play, a thorn in the side of the hosts’ sides through the 90 minutes. The first goal came in the 7th minute, setting the tone for the match. By the 72nd minute, Barker had put in his fourth goal of the game to increase the lead to 8-0. With the end of the season approaching, QBFC will look to keep their scoring touch.
Ahmed Elgendy – York College
York College goalkeeper Ahmed Elgendy has been putting in some strong work behind the Cardinals defense this season. The freshman was named CUNYAC Rookie of the Week for the second straight time, the first York player to repeat the honor since Menard Millus 11 years ago in 2010. Elgendy turned aside a career best 15 of the 17 shots he faced as he carried York to a 2OT draw against St. Elizabeth’s College in their home opener, including 10 saves in overtime.t Through the first weeks of the season, Elgendy leads the CUNYAC in saves with 30 and saves-per-game with 10. He’s had plenty of work between the posts, but has been up to the challenge.