Penguins Finish November Hosting Akron on Wednesday

Mary Dunn (Photo by Rob Hayes)
Mary Dunn (Photo by Rob Hayes)

Scouting Report

  • Youngstown State looks to get back to its winning ways on Wednesday as it hosts Akron at 7 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on sportsanimal1390.com, iHeartRadio, ESPN+ and WatchESPN.
  • The Penguins won their first four games of the campaign but lost twice last week in two very different ways. YSU had a nightmarish offensive performance in a 62-34 loss at Kent State last Tuesday, and it let a 17-point lead slip away in a 58-56 loss to Yale on Friday.
  • YSU's four wins were over Preseason NEC favorite Robert Morris, an improved Loyola Chicago team, ACC member Pitt and NAIA Carlow. The victory over Pitt was YSU's first over a Power Five conference member since 2012.
  • YSU dressed just eight players in both games last week, and it will dress a maximum of nine players for the foreseeable future.
  • The Penguins have gotten solid contribution from their guards through six games. The top two scorers – Alison Smolinski and McKenah Peters – and the top two rebounders – Chelsea Olson and Peters – are guards.
  • Smolinski has made at least one 3-pointer in each game, and she leads the Horizon League with 3.5 3-pointers per game. She ranks sixth in program history with 174 career 3s.
  • YSU leads the Horizon League in free-throw percentage, rebounding margin, assists and assist-to-turnover radio, and it ranks second in scoring defense, field-goal percentage defense and 3s per game.
  • YSU has played in the postseason four times in the last six seasons with WNIT berths in 2013 and 2015 and WBI bids in 2016 and 2018.
  • YSU has made at least 200 3-pointers in eight straight seasons, and it has led the Horizon League in 3-pointers per game in four straight campaigns.
  • Sarah Cash returns for her fifth season to finish what could go down as one of the all-time great careers at YSU. She is on pace to set the school record for career field-goal percentage, and she also ranks in the top 20 in points, field goals, free throws and blocks.
  • Cash was voted Preseason First-Team All-Horizon League, and Olson was voted to the second team.

Tickets, Promotions and Fan Information

  • Advance tickets for Wednesday's game are available at the YSU Athletic Ticket Office in Stambaugh Stadium. Tickets can be ordered in person or over the phone by calling (330) 941-1YSU.
  • The ticket office is open 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Beeghly Center Ticket Office will open at 6 p.m. on Wednesday.
  • There will be a Teddy Bear Toss to benefit Mercy Health at halftime, and fans who bring a new teddy bear or stuffed animal and throw it onto the court at halftime will receive a voucher for a free ticket to a future home game.
  • Parking Information
  • Visitors Guide

Previewing Akron

A Win Would...

  • Improve YSU's record to 5-2 this season.
  • Give the Penguins a 4-1 record at Beeghly Center.
  • Be the 598th in school history and the 87th under Barnes.

Scouting Akron

  • Akron is 3-0 this season and will playing Wednesday for the first time since Nov. 18. The Zips beat North Carolina A&T to start the season and picked up sizeable wins over Horizon League teams Oakland and Northern Kentucky.
  • The Zips have made 32 3-pointers through three games, and Megan Sefcik has 15 of them while shooting 46.9 percent from beyond the arc.
  • Akron returns all five starters from last year's team that went 9-21. Melissa Jackson is in her 11th overall season at Akron and her first as head coach.

Series History

  • Overall: Youngstown State leads 38-18
  • Barnes: 1-4 // Home: 18-6 // Away: 15-11 // Neutral: 5-1
  • Current Win Streak: 3 by Akron
  • YSU and Akron have played each other every season since 1996-97. The annual contest has not been played before Dec. 1 since 2001. The only teams that YSU has played more in its history are Cleveland State and Wright State.

On This Day

  • YSU is 5-8 in 13 previous contests played on Nov. 28. The Penguins have beaten Akron twice on Nov. 28 – 84-77 in 1998 and 70-47 in 2001.
  • The Penguins tied a school record with 16 3-pointers in a 96-77 win at Oakland on Nov. 28, 2015. In the game, Kelsea Newman made eight 3s while Indiya Benjamin posted 21 points and 13 assists.

Recapping Yale

  • Youngstown State led the 2018 WBI Champions by 16 points with 11 minutes left but let a win slip away on Friday as Yale rallied for a 58-56 win.
  • The Penguins led by 17 in the third period, and their lead was 49-33 with less than a minute to go in the period. Yale got a three-point play to end the third and proceeded to outscore YSU 22-7 in the fourth.
  • YSU led 53-42 with 8:15 left but made just one more basket the rest of the game. Yale scored 14 straight points to go up 56-53, and YSU's only points over the final eight minutes came on a McKenah Peters 3 that tied the score with 2:02 remaining.
  • The Penguins were 1-for-11 from 3-point range in the fourth period and 5-for-32 in the game. They missed three shots from beyond the arc in the final 20 seconds that would have given them the lead.
  • Sarah Cash finished with a game-high 17 points on 6-of-9 shooting, and Mary Dunn finished with 14. That duo scored 25 points in the first half but just six in the second half once Yale switched to a zone defense. Still, it was a nice bounceback game for Cash and Dunn after they combined for four points on 1-for-14 shooting the previous game at Kent State.
  • YSU held Roxy Barahman to 12 points, which was under half her average, but the junior guard scored 10 of her points in the fourth period.
  • In the fourth period, Yale had nine fast-break points, eight points off turnovers and six following offensive rebounds.
  • Over the last three-plus seasons, YSU was 41-3 when holding the lead through three quarters.

Up Next

  • Youngstown State will have its first overnight road trip of the season as it travels to Canisius for a Saturday contest. Tipoff at the Koessler Athletic Center is set for 2 p.m., and the game will be broadcast on 1390 WNIO and ESPN+