Penguins Have 53-43 Setback vs. Cleveland State

Penguins Have 53-43 Setback vs. Cleveland State

The Youngstown State women's basketball team never got into an offensive flow, and Cleveland State had two runs in the second half to win 53-43 over the Penguins on Saturday afternoon at Beeghly Center.

The Penguins shot 24.6 percent overall and 17.6 percent from 3-point range while committing 19 turnovers. The Vikings weren't much better at 25 percent from the field, but they had runs of 10-0 and 11-0 in the second half and held an 18-point edge at the free-throw line.

Cleveland State also had 18 offensive rebounds, which it turned into a slight 9-5 edge in second chance points. The Vikings, though committing four more turnovers, held a 19-8 edge in points off turnovers.

Janae Jackson was YSU's top scorer with nine points off the bench, and Nikki Arbanas had eight points before fouling out in the fourth period.

Olivia Voskuhl scored a game-high 16 points, and Brooke Smith scored 12 of her 14 points from the free-throw line.

YSU led 19-18 at halftime and scored the first bucket of the second half to match its largest lead of the game at 21-18. Cleveland State scored 10 straight points to take a 28-21 lead with 5:08 left in the third period, and in the sloppy game, that was enough.

Youngstown State answered by scoring the next six points to get within one on at 28-27 on a Sarah Cash free throw with 1:26 left, but the Vikings scored the next 11 points to go up 12. Voskuhl hit a 3-pointer on CSU's final possession of the third period, and Abshaw scored five straight points to end the run.

Alison Smolinski hit a 3 to get the deficit back down to single digits at the 7:04 mark, and Cleveland State's largest lead was 43-30 with 5:25 left. The Penguins got within seven at 44-37 and 48-41 with 1:14 left.

The teams combined for 24 turnovers in the first half, and Youngstown State scored the final four points of the period to take a 19-18 lead after 20 minutes. There were five lead changes in the half, but Cleveland State held the upper hand for nearly 15 minutes.

YSU's largest lead of the half came when an Arbanas fast-break layup put it ahead 7-4 at the 6:52 mark. The Penguins didn't score again for more than six minutes, but Cleveland State was only able to go up 11-7 during that stretch. A 3-pointer by Indiya Benajmin got the Penguins within one, and Allison Mitchell beat the buzzer with a layup to put the Vikings up 13-10.

YSU didn't make a field goal until the 4:32 mark of the second quarter, but Cleveland State didn't make one for the final 8:11 of the quarter. Arbanas ended YSU's drought with a 3-pointer at the 4:32 mark, and Smolinski's drive with 1:59 left gave the Penguins their 19-18 halftime lead.

Youngstown State will continue its three-game home stand on Thursday as it hosts Valparaiso at 5:15 p.m.

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