Women's Basketball Heads to Akron Looking for 10th Victory

Sarah Cash and the Penguins play at Akron on Monday in the final game before Christmas.
Sarah Cash and the Penguins play at Akron on Monday in the final game before Christmas.
Youngstown State at Akron
Date & Time Monday, Dec. 21, at 7 p.m.
Location James A. Rhodes Arena - Akron, Ohio
Tickets GoZips.com
Radio iHeartRadio | 1390 WNIO
Video GoZips.com
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Scouting Report

  • The Youngstown State women's basketball team will try to carry momentum into Christmas break as it looks to win its 10th game at Akron on Monday. Tipoff at the James A. Rhodes Arena is set for 7 p.m., and the game will be broadcast live on 1390 WNIO, iHeartRadio and gozips.com.
  • Youngstown State swept its three-game home stand by winning each contest by at least 28. The Penguins beat Kent State by 30 on Dec. 12, and they beat Division II opponents Salem International and Lake Erie by 40 and 28, respectively.
  • The Penguins have won at least nine of their first 10 games for the second straight year and for the fifth time in program history. They have started 10-1 or better four times.
  • YSU has won 19 of its last 22 non-conference games over the last two seasons. The Penguins are 9-4 against MAC teams over the last five seasons.
  • Youngstown State has made at least 15 3-pointers in three different games this season. It ranks second in the Horizon League with 8.8 3-pointers per game.
  • Sarah Cash is the Horizon League leader in field-goal percentage at .610, and Indiya Benjamin leads the conference with 6.4 assists per game.
  • Youngstown State returns three starters and a total of eight letterwinners from last season's team that won 21 games and earned an at large berth to play in the Women's NIT.

Previewing Akron

A Win Would...

  • Allow YSU to win at least 10 of its first 11 games for the fifth time in its history and for the second straight season.
  • Be YSU's 20th win in its last 23 non-league games.
  • Give YSU 39 wins all time against Akron

On This Date

  • YSU is 7-8 all time in games played on Dec. 21. The Penguins are 1-1 against the Zips on Dec. 21, a 67-62 double-overtime loss in 2003 and a 74-56 win in 2007.
  • Three school records have been set on Dec. 21. The Penguins attempted 43 free throws as a team versus Clarion in 2006. Devin Novak attempted a school record 17 3-pointers at Akron in 2003. Danielle Carson tied her own school record with 16 assists against Montevallo in 1985.
  • Tiara Scott had one of the 11 20-point, 20-rebound games in school history at Akron on Dec. 21, 2007, finishing with 25 points and 21 rebounds.

Series with Akron

  • Youngstown State has played Akron more than any other non-Horizon League team, and the Penguins are 38-15 all time against the Zips. The teams have played every season since 1996-97.
  • YSU has won three of the last four meetings against Akron, and the Penguins won eight straight contests from 1977 to 1981 and seven straight from 1996 to 2002.
  • Last Meeting: Heidi Schlegel and Latisha Walker each scored 25 points to help lead Youngstown State to a 75-62 win over Akron on Dec. 29, 2014. YSU entered the game with a 10-1 record, and Akron was 10-0. YSU trailed for just 64 seconds before going on a 13-2 run to go up by double digits with 9 minutes left.
  • Series record: Youngstown State State leads 38-15
  • Winning streak: 1 by Youngstown State
  • Last YSU win at Akron: Dec. 18, 2011

Recapping Lake Erie

Youngstown State scored 19 straight points during a 29-point second period to pull away for an 89-61 victory over Lake Erie on Wednesday morning.

YSU led 20-16 after a period and 27-22 with 4:28 left in the second period. Nikki Arbanas scored seven straight points, and Kelsea Newman scored eight straight during the 19-0 run that changed the game. Arbanas was the only starter to play more than 22 minutes.

The Penguins made 15 3-pointers, which was one shy of the school record and matched the record at Beeghly Center. Newman went 4-for-4 from 3-point range, and Arbanas and Alison Smolinski both had three triples.

Quick Notes from Lake Erie

  • There were approximately 1,500 Youngstown area students and teachers in attendance at the Third Annual School Field Trip Game presented by Chick-fil-A.
  • YSU made at least 15 3-pointers in a game for the third time this season and for the second time in the last three games. There were only four such games in the program's first 40 seasons (1986-87 was the first season with 3-pointers). YSU made four 3-pointers in both the first and second periods and five in the third.
  • The Penguins finished their three-game home stand winning by an average of 32.7 points. They shot at least 50 percent from the field and made at least 10 3-pointers in all three games.
  • Eight different YSU players scored at least eight points, and four of those players came off the bench.
  • Newman went 4-for-4 from 3-point range and 5-for-6 from the free-throw line. She finished with a game-high 17 points in just 12 minutes.
  • Arbanas scored 15 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the field. She has scored at least nine points in every game, and she's made multiple 3-pointers in seven of the last eight games.
  • Jenna Hirsch had the best game of her season with nine points, six assists, four rebounds and four steals.
  • Melinda Trimmer scored a career-high eight points behind a pair of 3-pointers
  • Youngstown State held a sizeable 43-20 edge in rebounding, which helped gain a 14-4 advantage in second-chance points. The Penguins were more than plus-20 in rebounding for the first time since outrebounding Ohio Valley by 21 on Dec. 19, 2014. The last time YSU was better than plus-23 was at IUPUI on Dec. 3, 2012.
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