YSU Welcomes Cincinnati to Beeghly Center on Sunday

Melissa Thompson | Photo by Ron Stevens
Melissa Thompson | Photo by Ron Stevens

The Youngstown State women's basketball team will play the third game of its five-game home stand against Cincinnati on Sunday at 2:05 p.m. at Beeghly Center. The game against the Bearcats, YSU's second opponent from a BCS automatic qualifying conference in an eight-day span, will be broadcast live on 570 WKBN, iHeartRadio and the Horizon League Network.

The Penguins will be looking to get back on the winning track after dropping three straight contests. YSU (1-5) had its toughest loss of the season on Wednesday when Miami (Ohio) rallied from a six-point deficit in the final 90 seconds to win 70-67. The Penguins led 67-61 but saw their final six possessions result in two missed shots, three turnovers and the end of the game. The RedHawks scored the final nine points of the contest to steal the win.

Liz Hornberger had her best game of the season on Wednesday with 16 points and six assists as one of three Penguins in double figures. Kelsea Newman scored a career-high 13 points, and foul trouble contributed to leading scorer Heidi Schlegel being held to 12 points. Schlegel continues to rank second in the Horizon League with 20.5 points per game, a big improvement from the 9.8 points she averaged last season.

Cincinnati is 3-4 after a 75-44 win at home over Morehead State on Wednesday. The Bearcats have played only one true road game this season, a 77-61 loss at Northern Kentucky. Dayeesha Hollins is averaging a team-high 12.7 points.

Youngstown State will have a four-day break from game action to concentrate on finals next week. The Penguins' next contest will be Friday at 7:05 p.m. against Ohio Valley, a Division II team in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference.

Promotion

All fans in attendance will receive a YSU Key Chain, courtesy of Medical Mutual and WKBN 27 First News

Top Story Lines

  • YSU is looking for its first win at home over a team from a BCS automatic qualifying conference since 1997. The Penguins are 0-6 all-time against Cincinnati, and the Bearcats are one of two Division I teams in Ohio that the Penguins have never beaten (Ohio State).
  • YSU assistant coach Brenna Banktson played under Cincinnati assistant Tasha McDowell at Western Michigan for three seasons.
  • Preseason Second-Team All-Horizon League selection Heidi Schlegel has posted the four highest scoring games of her career this season, ranging from 27 points to 22.
  • Youngstown State was 11-for-19 (57.9 percent) from 3-point range in the win over Northern Kentucky. It is 21-for-110 (19.1 percent) in its other five games.
  • Three YSU players who appeared in at least 28 games last season, two of which played in every game, missed the first five games due to various medical reasons.
  • Youngstown State went 23-10 last season, its best record since 1997-98. The Penguins finished second in the Horizon League, played in the conference tournament semifinals and won a game in the WNIT.

Scouting Cincinnati

Cincinnati is 3-4 after a 75-44 win at home over Morehead State on Wednesday. The Bearcats are 0-1 in true road games this season with a 77-61 loss at Northern Kentucky, a team YSU beat 67-53 on Nov. 20.

Senior guard Dayeesha Hollins, who missed the game against YSU last year, is averaging a team-high 12.7 points. Forward Jeanise Randolph is averaging 11.1 points and 7.1 rebounds while shooting 56.9 percent.

Last Time vs. Cincinnati

Cincinnati outscored YSU 12-2 over the final 2:20 to close out a 57-46 victory at Fifth Third Arena on Dec. 5, 2012.

The Penguins found themselves down 13-3 after a slow start but fought their way back and led 33-28 with just over 13 minutes left. YSU trailed 45-44 with 2:44 remaining.

YSU shot just 30.4 percent, and Liz Hornberger was the only player who shot above 50 percent. Hornberger had with 13 points, and Brandi Brown had 20 points and 10 rebounds.

Series with Cincinnati

Cincinnati has won all six games with YSU in a series that dates back to the 1979-80 season. The teams did not play between 1983 and 2006. Cincinnati won 85-78 the last time it was in Youngstown on Nov. 10, 2006

Recapping Miami (Ohio)

Miami (Ohio) outscored the Youngstown State women's basketball team 9-0 over the final 90 seconds to rally for a 70-67 win on Wednesday night at the Beeghly Center.

YSU led 67-61 at the 2:09 mark when Karen Flagg split a pair of free throws, but that was the last time the Penguins scored. YSU's final six possessions resulted in an expired clock, two missed shots and three turnovers, including a charge call on Heidi Schlegel with the game tied at 67 with 25 seconds left.

Hannah Robertson made a back-door layup to put Miami ahead 69-67 with 14 seconds left, and Flagg's tying attempt was off the mark. Nicole Anderson made a free throw with just over a second remaining for the final tally.

Liz Hornberger led all scorers with 16 points, and Kelsea Newman scored 12 of her 13 points in the first half.

MISSED FREE THROWS: In a game where it lost by three points, Youngstown State missed 11 free throws. The Penguins were 3-for-4 in the first half and 7-for-17 in the second half. The 47.6 free-throw percentage was the worst in a game for YSU since going 2-for-7 against UIC on Jan. 14, 12. Previously, the last time YSU shot under 50 percent when attempting at least 20 free throws was March 6, 2010.

HORNBERGER'S BEST GAME: Senior Liz Hornberger scored a season-high 16 points while adding six assists and two rebounds. She made three 3-pointers and scored 11 of her points in the second half. Miami was able to buckle down defensively and hold her scoreless over the final 8:30. The 16 points were the second-most for Hornberger in her career, trailing only the 18 points she scored at Miami last season.

HELLO, NEWMAN: Redshirt freshman Kelsea Newman scored a career-high 13 points behind four first-half 3-pointers against Miami (Ohio) on Wednesday. Newman was 4-for-6 from beyond the arc in the first half, and her buckets came at big moments. She hit back-to-back treys to start a 17-4 run for the Penguins, and her fourth triple gave YSU its largest lead of the first half.

BENCH EFFORT: Youngstown State's bench had its most productive game of the season so far with 23 points. Kelsea Newman accounted for 13 of those points while Jenna Hirsch contributed a career-high seven and Ashley Lawson had three. The previous high for bench points was 14 against VCU in the season opener.

ODDS & ENDS: Karen Flagg blocked a season-high two shots for the seventh multi-block game of her career... Foul trouble limited top scorer Heidi Schlegel to nine minutes in the first half, and she was held to a season-low 12 points... The four 3s by Liz Hornberger and Kelsea Newman tied for the most by a Penguin this season... After outrebounding its first three opponents, YSU has been outrebounded in three straight games.