YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The Youngstown State women’s basketball team used a big 10-0 run in the fourth period to hold off Stony Brook for a 67-60 win in the opening round of the 2016 Women’s Basketball Invitational on Wednesday evening at Beeghly Center.
Stony Brook didn’t lead until the fourth period, and its final lead was 53-52 with 5:22 remaining. Indiya Benjamin hit a 3-pointer to spark the decisive run, and Kelsea Newman hit another triple on YSU’s next possession to extend the margin to five. Newman’s triple was YSU’s 276th of the season, which broke the program’s single-season record.
Sarah Cash scored a game-high 17 points, and Janae Jackson was next with 16. Newman added 14, and Benjamin scored all 10 of her points in the fourth period to help the Penguins hold on.
The victory is YSU’s 20th on the season as it improved to 20-12 overall. The Seawolves end the campaign with a 17-15 mark.
YSU led 8-6 after the first period and owned a 29-27 lead at halftime. SBU knotted the game up at 42 after three periods setting the stage for an exciting fourth period.
The first five minutes of the period featured four ties and the Seawolves’ first lead of the contest, which came at 48-47 with 7:00 left on a basket by Kori Bayne-Walker. Jenna Hirsch answered with a 3-pointer but SBU tied the game again at 50 on a basket by Alyssa Coiro.
Newman put the Guins ahead 52-50 before a a 3-pointer from the top of the key by Elizabeth Manner gave the Seawolves a 53-52 lead with 5:22 left.
After that basket, the Penguins reeled off the next 10 points in just under two-and-a-half minutes to put the contest away.
Following the back-to-back triples Benjamin and Newman, Benjamin made the advantage 60-53 when she had an easy layup off an inbounds pass from Nikki Arbanas. After three straight misses by SBU, Benjamin made her third straight field goal connecting on a floating layup at the end of the shot clock with 2:53 left in the game.
Davion Wingate’s old-fashioned three-point play brought SBU within 62-56 with 2:04 left, but Cash’s off-glass layup off a perfect pick-and-roll feed from Benjamin pushed the lead back to 64-56.
Brittany Snow’s putback of her own miss pulled SBU to within 654-58 with 1:33 left. Benjamin’s fourth straight made bucket, a 14-foot jumper from just inside the elbow, came with 1:04 to extend the advantage back to 66-58. She added a free throw to make the advantage 67-58, and two free throws by Snow with 14.1 remaining provided the final seven-point margin.
For the night, YSU shot 49.1 percent connecting on 27-of-55 attempts while the Penguins held the Seawolves to just 35 percent shooting (21-of-60).
Youngstown State advances to play another home game on Saturday at 2 p.m. against either Fairfield or UMBC.
Tickets for the contest will be available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at the YSU Athletic Ticket Office. All tickets for the quarterfinal game are $10. Fans can also purchase tickets by phone at (330) 941-1978.
COURTESY: YSU SPORTS INFORMATION