Zips defeat Penguins in OT


Staff report

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Akron outscored the Youngstown State women’s basketball team by 15 at the free-throw line and defeated the Penguins 76-74 in overtime at Beeghly Center.

YSU’s Indiya Benjamin scored 21 points for the second straight game, but she battled foul trouble and was whistled for her fifth infraction on a soft bump with 2:45 left in the fourth period. She had just hit a 3-pointer that put the Penguins up 62-59, and YSU did not score again in regulation.

Akron outscored the Penguins 27-12 at the free-throw line and attempted 23 more free throws.

Mary Dunn scored a career-high 19 points on 9-for-14 shooting, and 13 of those points came in the second half. Alison Smolinski scored six of her eight points in overtime, and Natalie Myers scored all seven of her points in the first period. Benjamin finished her night with 21 points in 21 minutes.

The Penguins played without leading scorer Sarah Cash, who missed the game with a knee injury. She was one of three players who were preseason starters who did not play in the game.

Alex Ricketts scored 20 points, including seven in overtime, to lead Akron. She added 10 rebounds, and Hannah Plybon also had a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds.

Youngstown State’s 11-point lead came at 27-16 on a Smolinski bucket at the 5:51 mark of the second period. The Penguins scored just six points in the next 10 minutes, which allowed Akron to take a 38-33 lead at the 7:16 mark of the third period.

Akron led by as much as six in the third period before YSU closed the period on a 10-3 run. Mailee Jones hit a runner at the buzzer to put the Penguins ahead 47-46 heading into the final quarter.

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