Penguins Host UIC Sunday in Final Regular-Season Game at Beeghly

Nikki Arbanas and the Penguins host UIC on Sunday in their regular-season home finale.
Nikki Arbanas and the Penguins host UIC on Sunday in their regular-season home finale.

Scouting Report

  • Youngstown State plays its final home game of the regular season on Sunday as it hosts UIC at Beeghly Center. Tipoff against the Flames is set for 5 p.m., and the game will be broadcast live on 570 WKBN, iHeartRadio, ESPN3 and the WatchESPN App. Admission is free for all fans for Sponsor Appreciation weekend.
  • The game against UIC was supposed to be part of a doubleheader on Saturday, but the Flames could not travel on Wednesday due to inclement weather. UIC lost 72-69 at Cleveland State on Friday.
  • YSU is coming off arguably its best effort of Horizon League play that resulted in an 87-66 victory over Valparaiso on Friday. The Penguins shot 52.6 percent and had four players score in double figures in the 21-point victory.
  • YSU enters Sunday's game in fifth place in the conference standings with an 8-7 record. The Penguins are 1.5 games out of third place with three games remaining. YSU is aiming to win at least nine conference games for the fourth straight season.
  • YSU is averaging nine 3-pointers per game overall, which ranks ninth in the country, and 10.2 in Horizon League play. The Penguins have made at least 200 3-pointers for the sixth consecutive season.
  • Youngstown State has started four underclassmen in 15 straight games and 22 times overall. YSU's top three scorers are sophomores, and leading scorer Sarah Cash has the fourth-best field-goal percentage in the country at 63.9 percent.

Promotions

  • Fans will receive a water Bottle, courtesy of WKBN 27 First News, Farmers National Bank and ValleyCare.
  • Admission is free for all fans for Sponsor Appreciation weekend.

Previewing UIC

A Win Would...

  • Give the Penguins at least 18 wins in a season for the 13th time in program history, including three times in the last four seasons.
  • Give YSU a season sweep of UIC.
  • Give YSU at least nine Horizon League victories for the fourth consecutive season.
  • Guarantee at least a .500 record in the Horizon League for the fourth straight year and for the fifth time since joining the league in 2001-02.

On This Date

  • Youngstown State is 4-7 overall in games played on Feb. 28. The Penguins snapped a four-game losing skid on the date with a 79-66 home win over UIC in 2013. They lost 73-27 at Beeghly Center to Green Bay in 2015. That was their lowest scoring total ever at home.
  • Brandi Brown had 39 points, the seventh-most in school history, in the win over UIC in 2013.

Scouting UIC

  • UIC is 12-15 overall and 3-13 in Horizon League play following a 72-69 loss at Cleveland State on Friday. The Flames have lost four straight since winning 65-51 at Detroit on Feb. 11. UIC was 9-2 in non-conference play.
  • UIC ranks second in the conference in scoring defense at 62.7 points per game, which is 0.3 better than YSU. The Flames are also second in both rebounding margin (plus 6.2) and blocks per game (3.9).
  • Senior Ruvanna Campbell ranks third in the country with 13.4 rebounds per game, and she's second in the league in scoring with 18 points per contest. Kendyl Nunn is averaging 13.3 points and shooting 40.9 percent from 3-point range.

Series with UIC

Last Meeting: Sarah Cash scored 23 points, and YSU led for more than 36 minutes in a 69-64 win at UIC on Jan. 21. The Penguins led by as many as 15 in the third period and led by at least five the rest of the way. YSU had 21 assists on 24 field goals and made 10 3-pointers.

Recapping Valparaiso

Four players scored in double figures, and the Penguins led for 36 minutes in an impressive 87-66 win over Valparaiso on Friday night at Beeghly Center.

The Penguins had their largest margin of victory iSarah Cashlay and shot a season-best 52.6 percent. Sarah Cash had game-highs of 21 points and 10 rebounds, and Janae Jackson scored all 15 of her points in the second half. Nikki Arbanas also had 15, and Indiya Benjamin added 12 points with seven assists.

The Penguins led by 10 (20-10) after the first quarter, 15 (39-24) at halftime and 22 (60-38) at the end of three. YSU led by 28 three times in the first three minutes of the fourth.

YSU trailed 4-1 just under four minutes into the game but outscored the Crusaders 19-6 the rest of the first quarter. The Guins led by double figures for the last 22:52 of the game.

Quick Notes from Valparaiso

  • YSU shot 52.6 percent, besting its previous season best of 51.7 percent against Lake Erie on Dec. 16.
  • In their last four games, the Penguins have shot 20.8 percent at Green Bay, 50 percent at Milwaukee, 24.6 percent against Cleveland State and 52.6 percent against Valparaiso.
  • YSU attempted 24 3-pointers, which was its fewest since attempting 21 in the win over Wright State on Jan. 28. The Penguins made at least nine 3-pointers for the 15th time in 26 games.
  • The Penguins outrebounded Valparaiso 38-28. It was the first time that they won the rebounding battle in Horizon League play.
  • Valparaiso shot 25 percent in the first half and was shooting 27.9 percent after three periods. The Crusaders made nine of their last 11 attempts in the fourth to finish the game shooting 35.6 percent. Three straight opponents have shot below 37 percent against YSU, and the Penguins have held six straight teams under 70 points.
  • Cash finished 9-of-11 from the field and 3-of-4 at the free-throw line. It was the seventh time this season that she shot at least 80 percent from the field.
  • Indiya Benjamin notched the 250th assist of her career
  • Jenna Hirsch surpassed 450 career points, and her eight points were the third-highest total of the season.
  • Janae Jackson scored the 250th point of her YSU career
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