Heidi Schlegel had the highest scoring-game in the Horizon League this season, and the Youngstown State women's basketball team scored the final 11 points to rally for a 79-73 win at Milwaukee on Thursday evening.
Schlegel scored 38 points, tied for the eighth-most in a game in school history, and she had six of those points consecutively in the final 3:04 as the Penguins came from behind for their 18th win of the season.
Schlegel had 14 field goals, but the biggest shot of the night came when Nikki Arbanas hit a 3-pointer at the end of the shot clock with 10.4 seconds left to push YSU's lead to 77-73.
Freshman Jenny Lindner scored 17 of her 25 points in the second half to pace Milwaukee. Ashley Green had 16 points in the first half, but the Penguins held her scoreless in the second half. Schlegel fouled her out with 3:04 left, and the Panthers did not score again.
Lindner hit a 3 that allowed Milwaukee to tie its largest lead of the game at 73-68 with 3:31 left. In a game where the Panthers outrebounded the Penguins 17-7 on the offensive glass, Schlegel came up with perhaps the most important one of the night on YSU's next possession. She grabbed an Indiya Benjamin miss, and she drew Green's fifth foul on a putback attempt. Schlegel converted both free throws to get the score within a possession, and Milwaukee went on to turn the ball over five times in the final three minutes.
Schlegel got the Penguins within one on a layup with 2:12 left, and she made both ends of a one-and-one with 55 seconds remaining to give YSU a 74-73 lead. The fifth-year senior had a steal on Milwaukee's next possession, and Arbanas hit a straight-away triple off a pass from Benjamin with 10.4 seconds left to put YSU up 77-73. Milwaukee missed a free throw and turned the ball over on its next two possessions, and Jenna Hirsch and Benjamin made a free throw apiece for the final tally.
Schlegel and Green went head-to-head in the first half when the Penguins led by as many as 12, but Milwaukee rallied to get within four, 36-32, at halftime. YSU battled foul trouble throughout the opening period with Benjamin, Sarah Cash, Kelsea Newman and Latisha Walker all missing time with two fouls.
Newman scored 11 points in the first eight minutes, and YSU led 22-10 when Schlegel buried a triple with 10:07 remaining. That was in a stretch where Schlegel scored 10 consecutive points for the Penguins. Milwaukee scored the next seven points to get within 22-17, and YSU's largest lead the rest of the period was eight.
An Arbanas triple capped an 8-0 run early in the second half that gave the Penguins a 44-34 advantage, but Milwaukee scored the next six points to start a 24-10 spurt that put the Panthers ahead 58-54 with 10:31 left. Macie Dorow had the tying and go-ahead buckets for UWM.
Milwaukee held the advantage from the 11:02 mark until a Schlegel jumper knotted the score at 66 with 6:28 remaining. Schlegel tied the score again at 68, and YSU didn't regain the lead until her two free throws with 55 seconds remaining.
Schlegel's 38 points came on 14 field goals, three of which were 3-pointers, and seven free throws. She was 14-of-20 from the field, 3-of-3 from beyond the arc and 7-of-10 from the free-throw line. Newman and Arbanas both had 11, and Walker finished with eight points and nine rebounds before fouling out in 16 minutes. Hirsch led all players with seven assists.
Youngstown State shot 54.7 percent overall and went 10-for-20 from 3-point range. Milwaukee shot 41.9 percent, and it made 12 3-pointers while converting 18 second-chance points to help make up for the lower shooting percentage.
Youngstown State will remain on the road to play at Valparaiso on Saturday at 2:35 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on 570 WKBN, iHeartRadio and ESPN3.