Beeghly 'rockin' Saturday
It was an enjoyable night at Beeghly Center Saturday with both the YSU men's and women's teams posting victories. What was even better was there were actually fans in the stands.
The attendance was announced at 3,982, and although the actual figure might not have been that big, it was still one of the best turnouts this year.
And the Penguins gave them something to cheer about.
Most of the fans rolled in about the second half of the women's game and that was good, because if they had to sit through the first half, they might never have come back.
The YSU women and Detroit put on a pitiful exhibition in the first 20 minutes. With less then five minutes left in the half the score was 10-8 in favor of the Penguins. It ended 15-8.
YSU coach Tisha Hill said the Penguins played good defense in the half, but they certainly didn't play anywhere near good on offense.
The offense improved in the second half, but with an overall shooting percentage of 29, the Penguins aren't going to win too many more games in the Horizon League.
The Penguins appear to have the talent to win in the league, but are still struggling to put it all together.
Men shoot wellin Horizon win
The men shot 50 percent in their 81-63 win over UW-Milwaukee and any time the Penguins hit that mark they are going to be a force in the league.
The Penguins swept the two-game series with the Panthers and that is only the second time in the six years in the league that they have swept an opponent. The other time was against Cleveland State in 2003-04.
YSU is one of the best defensive teams in the league and have played their best basketball in the second half of their games.
"We always feel that if we can stay in the game in the first half we have a chance to win, because of our defense and our success in the second half this year," said coach Jerry Slocum.
The Horizon League, in both the men's and women's divisions, have one good team and the rest are pretty average.
Butler is the best in the men's division and UW-Green Bay is head over heels better than anybody in the women's division, but the rest of the spots are wide open in both divisions.
The Penguins will take a crack at the top teams this week as the men play at Butler on Wednesday, while the women take on both Milwaukee and Green Bay on Thursday and Saturday on the road.
Penguins to gettop area player
The YSU men's team had a big addition to its program last week.
Kennedy Catholic High's 6-foot-4 senior swingman, Blair Rozenblad, verbally committed to Youngstown State Thursday, according to first-year Golden Eagles' coach Bob Patton.
However Rozenblad has not yet played thus far this season after sustaining an ACL knee injury almost exactly a year ago.
"He's a player that can do it all," said Patton. "I can't wait for him to get back in the lineup because he will make us so much better."
Prior to his season-ending injury a year ago, Rozenblad had been recruited heavily by both Penn State and West Virginia, who both dropped off after the injury.
There is little doubt that the Eagles senior would not have committed to YSU had he been healthy and there is no guarantee that he will be able to pick up where he left off before the injury.
"He'll be better than ever, because I know how he works and he'll probably be one of the biggest steals that YSU has ever gotten."
Football teamhonored Saturday
YSU is set to take on the Cleveland State Vikings at 7:05 p.m. on Saturday at the Beeghly Center in a Horizon League matchup.
Prior to the game, seniors from the 2006 football squad will sign autographs beginning at 6 p.m. in the upper balcony in the front lobby of the Beeghly Center.
At halftime, the Penguins will be presented their 2006 Gateway Football Conference championship trophy. Also, individual Gateway and All-America Awards will be handed out.
Following the game, the men's basketball team will sign autographs in the Beeghly Center. Free men's basketball team photos will be distributed at the game.
The annual YSU football awards banquet will be held Saturday at noon in the Chestnut Room at Kilcawley Center.
Pete Mollica covers YSU athletics for The Vindicator. Write to him at email@example.com and check out his blogs at vindy.com.