William Penn (3-0) edged Lyon (0-1) 62-58 in their toughest test this season.

by Wade Steinlage

William Penn University Athletics

William Penn University Athletics

Defense Helps WPU to Win Over #20 Lyon

Des Moines—The Statesmen finished up their run at the Grand View Classic on Saturday, taking on the 20th ranked Lyon College Scots.

The first quarter was a back-and-forth affair with six lead changes and four ties. Vashti Nwagbaraocha (Sr., Milwaukee Wis., Exercise Science) got the scoring going early pouring in six points in the opening frame but the Scots grabbed an early 15-14 lead at the end of the first.

Despite shooting just 38% in the quarter, the navy and gold played well on the defensive end forcing seven turnovers to keep them in striking distance. The Scots were able to maintain a slight advantage of 27-25 headed into the half.

The Statesmen made the necessary adjustments at halftime and continued their strong work on defense forcing another five turnovers. Those turnovers turned into easy points on offense as the team started to get in rhythm building as big as a six-point lead in the quarter.

WPU was able to open the scoring in the fourth grabbing as big as an 11-point lead while shooting 55% from the field in the stanza. The Scots would not go quietly however. With 21 ticks left, Lyon cut the lead to as low as two, 60-58, but Brenda Pennington (Jr., Hammond, Ind., Psychology) iced the game with two free-throws in the waning seconds.

“I was very proud of the effort and intensity on defense today” Head Coach Steve Williamson said, “Players were focused and did a great job making Lyon earn points” he added.

After the strong fourth quarter, William Penn was able to edge Lyon in shooting .412-.404. Despite shooting just 18% from distance and being outrebounded 35-32, the Statesmen were able to hang on to the victory with clutch free-throw shooting by posting 73% from the FT line to Lyon’s 57%.

Nwagbaraocha led the team in scoring posting 20 points while shooting 67% from the field. She also paced the team in rebounds with eight.

The backcourt duo of Kate Ylitalo (Sr., Maple Plain, Minn., Biology) and Pennington were effective all night producing 13 and 10 points respectively. Ylitalo also grabbed seven boards.

Jenna Santi (Sr., Oak Creek, Wis., Elementary Education) played the role of facilitator for the night posting a team-high five assists. She added five points and four rebounds as well. Shamiah Oliver (Sr., Chicago, Ill., Education) gave the team an offensive spark off the bench posting nine points in 17 minutes.

The contest concluded the weekend for the Statesmen who finished 2-0 in the Grand View classic.

Coach Williamson said, “All weekend our played determined on defense which led to easy scoring opportunities for us” he later added, “We had a lot of players making plays all weekend”.

Next Up: William Penn will now have 11 days off before they start Heart of America Athletic Conference play against Culver-Stockton in Canton, Missouri, starting at 5 p.m.

Posted by on Nov 4 2018. Filed under College Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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